In a bold move, Birkenstock is walking away from its business with online behemoth Amazon.
Beginning on Jan. 1, Birkenstock USA will no longer authorize the sale of any of its products on Amazon.com. It will also no longer authorize any third-party sellers to do so.
The news was delivered to Birkenstock’s partners earlier this month in a letter from David Kahan, CEO of Birkenstock Americas, which is based in Novato, Calif. “The Amazon marketplace, which operates as an ‘open market,’ creates an environment where we experience unacceptable business practices which we believe jeopardize our brand,” said Kahan. “This includes posting by sellers proven to have counterfeit Birkenstock products. It also includes a constant stream of unidentified unauthorized sellers who show a blatant disregard for our pricing policies. Policing this activity internally and in partnership with Amazon.com has proven impossible.”
While Kahan was unavailable for comment, the decision is likely to have a ripple effect throughout the industry as other brands seek to secure the integrity and pricing of their products in the marketplace.
The move, however, is good news for consumers eager to wear the real deal rather than unknowingly step into a pair of knockoffs. The brand continues to be on the must-have list of comfort consumers to fashionistas.