June 9, Sharp in the New York District Court, the California High Court on the Chinese home appliance brand Hisense issued a lawsuit, said Hisense in the United States to "SHARP" brand sales of low-quality low-cost LCD TV, damage the Sharp brand image, Hisense ceases to use the SHARP trademark and makes at least $ 100 million in damages.
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A company called "Blue Technology" website published an article that the site in the United States journalists from New York stakeholders to get news, Beijing time on June 16 at around 10:00, Sharp Corporation withdrew on Qingdao Hisense Electric litigation. The news is quoted by multiple media.
However, the Southern Weekend reporter can still be in the United States California High Court found the lawsuit. Hisense official said in an interview with Southern Weekend, confirmed that Sharp's lawsuit in New York court has been withdrawn, but for the California High Court proceedings whether to withdraw, do not know.
People close to Sharp told the Southern Weekend reporter that the original lawsuit was in both places and will now focus on litigation in California.
The lawsuit began in 2015. On July 31 of that year, Hisense and Sharp announced that Qingdao Hisense and its affiliates, US Hisense, jointly invested US $ 22.88 million to acquire 100% of Sharp's Mexican company and acquired the brand rights of Sharp TV in the Americas (except Brazil) And all channel resources for a period of five years (January 6, 2016 & mdash; January 5, 2021).
The focus of the case is Hisense in the United States on the use of SHARP brand. According to the Southern Weekend reporter in the California High Court website to inquire into the original litigation, Sharp believes that in order to highlight their product advantages, Hisense deliberately use Sharp's distribution network to sell inferior products, to damage Sharp's brand image. At the same time, Hisense in the use of Sharp brand also has false propaganda behavior.
Sharp wrote in the file, Hisense introduced seven Sharp models of television, the screen display on the screen size and the real situation does not match, such as LC & mdash; 75N8000 this TV, the package describes the size of 75 inches, but the actual Only 74.55 inches; retailers selling television, there are 11 more than the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) emission standards to prove that there is electromagnetic interference; Hisense website display products, at least one, in the brightness than the actual specification higher 35%; listed 4K TV, only meet the low resolution standards, and so on.
For Sharp's allegations, Hisense to the Southern Weekend reporter's response is that Sharp's so-called individual models "product quality problems" is an excuse to touch porcelain. And said Hisense in the summer after accepting the Americas business, the US market mainstream 32-inch, 50-inch, 65-inch TV, Sharp brand price index have a more substantial growth. In 2016 CES period, Hisense recently released Sharp N7000 series TV products have also been the United States Reviewed.com website named "edit selection" (Editor & rsquo; s Choice Award) & rdquo ;.
And for this time the case, Hisense International Marketing Deputy General Manager Zhu Dan is openly said that Sharp "evil people first complained", "the hatred of the modern" and the snake "ralph lauren pas cher, Hisense will actively respond to and continue to produce and sell Sharp brand TV products in North America.
According to Zhu Dan had the media's statement, Hisense acquired the Sharp Mexican factory and North American business in 2015 to "struggle" with Sharp. Zhu Dan said that at that time Sharp operating difficulties, a serious loss, has repeatedly visited Hisense, hoping for the North American Sharp & rdquo; this child looking for a best "people" in this context, Hisense took over the Sharp Mexican factory , Hosting Sharp North American brand sales.
However, according to the announcement at the time, Hisense that the acquisition is Hisense to promote the internationalization of the major progress, will also be conducive to Hisense international strategic objectives. In fact, this acquisition has played an important role in the internationalization of Hisense, especially in the North American market. Sharp's Mexican facility is also the largest TV manufacturing center in overseas.
Since then, Hisense Americas CEO Liu Ruirui told the media that in 2016, Hisense increased the additional $ 30 million to the plant to strengthen the automation and increase production capacity. Liu Ruirui also said that retailers demanded more orders from manufacturers because of lower inventories in major US retailers, but it would take a long time to transport products from Chinese factories and would be able to save from the Mexican factories A month's time.
For the Sharp American brand sales right to take over, the most direct income is Hisense in the North American market share upgrade. According to market research firm IHS data, in 2015, Hisense in the North American market share of only 2.8%, which Samsung 28.7% market share is not a small gap. But after taking over, Hisense can be Sharp's market share in North America transformed over. More importantly, you can use Sharp's reputation in the North American market to sell their own products.
In addition to Hisense, the domestic TV brands TCL, Haier, Skyworth, etc. are in the North American market to carry out business, which sells the highest domestic brand is TCL, according to IHS data, in 2016 its market share in North America is only 5% List of the fourth.
A domestic brand is not willing to name a North American market leader told the Southern Weekend reporter, has been the domestic TV brand in the North American market impression is "low-end, cheap" ralph lauren pas cher, it is difficult to enter the mainstream market in North America. According to its introduction, unlike the domestic market, North America's six stores Target, Costco, Amazon, Wal-Mart, Sam & rsquo; s club, Bestbuy settled in the product brand image and reputation have a certain threshold requirements, and domestic brands can be settled only There are one or two.
"In these stores you see the vast majority of TV products are Samsung, LG and the United States several local brands, domestic brands is difficult to find. "The above person in charge said that most of the domestic brands are less developed areas, RV and other niche sales channels, which is the main reason for domestic brands do not. Hisense took over Sharp's brand use rights and sales channels, for Hisense, no doubt a great help. & Rdquo;
North American market battle
In April 2016, Hon Hai Group announced to spend $ 3.5 billion acquisition of Sharp 66% of the shares, and received Sharp in the global brand control. North American market brand control battle from then on.
Hon Hai founder Guo Taiming in the beginning of last year to accept the "Wall Street Journal" interview, has made it clear that the acquisition of Sharp is hoping to improve Hon Hai's value chain, and do not want Hon Hai is only a low-profit brand OEM business. Gou said that Sharp is a very popular brand, and made it clear that to retain the Sharp brand.
Since then, Sharp has re-established its own brand strategy, hoping to unify the control of global brands. But in fact, in addition to North America, another important market - Europe, Sharp's brand control is not in the hands of Sharp himself. In 2014, Sharp and UMC (UMC) reached a brand licensing agreement, the Sharp brand sales in Europe sold to UMC.
However, early this year, Sharp is through the acquisition of UMC's holding company, to recover the Sharp brand in Europe sales. According to IHS's analysis, New Sharp hopes to return to the annual sales of 10 million LCD TVs. Sharp will not allow the presence of two Sharp & rdquo; brands in the global marketplace. Which also makes the solution to the North American brand control issues, become a top priority.
Hisense in the Southern Weekend reporter's reply said that in October 2016, the new Sharp president Dai Zheng Wu had been to Hisense, hope to "back" and "Hisense in North America, brand control." But was Hisense refused, Hisense is given the reasons for the performance of the contract, respect for the contract. Southern Weekend reporter trying to contact the new Sharp's actual control company Foxconn, get the reply is Sharp in the independent operation, need to contact Sharp in Japan's company. As of press time, Japan Sharp did not return to the Southern Weekend interview request.
For this round of brand sales rights of the battle, many analysts believe that Sharp & ldquo; potential must be "rdquo ;. Because for Sharp, Hisense is its competitors in the North American market, brand sales rights are rivals to master, five years later, the brand image will be how, full of unknown. This is what Sharp is most worried about and is highlighted in the lawsuit: Hisense deliberately uses Sharp's distribution network to sell poor products to harm Sharp's brand image.
Previously came out of Sharp withdrawal, also be regarded as misleading. People close to Sharp told the Southern Weekend reporters that the original lawsuit in both places, now in the New York District Court to withdraw, just to put more energy on the California High Court litigation.
If Sharp's allegations are supported by the court, the brand image of Hisense in the North American market will undoubtedly have a big blow. Sharp may also be able to recover its brand control in the Americas (except Brazil).