Acquisition of Page & Cooper® Brand

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The Microbrand Store
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Acquisition of Page & Cooper® Brand

Post by The Microbrand Store » August 15th 2020, 9:56am

Earlier this month, TimeApps, the corporation which for the last few years has run The Microbrand Store™ at, completed the purchase of the Page & Cooper® brand, another microbrand watch orientated retail brand that was based out of London in the UK.

We've seen a lot of speculation regarding Page and Cooper® since the British company originally behind the brand, Page & Cooper Ltd, went into voluntary liquidation earlier this year, leaving some customers without their watches, and some microbrands unpaid and out of pocket. To help clarify things, we wanted to share some information with the rest of the microbrand watch collecting community. First of all, we have not acquired the company or any physical stock. (Our understanding is there was no stock remaining when the company entered liquidation.) We have however acquired the brand name including all of the registered trademarks, and online presence, including the domain name and all of the social media accounts/channels such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc.

If you were one of the folks who've paid Page & Cooper Ltd for a watch and didn't get one, we've been burnt and out of pocket ourselves dealing with other microbrands and retailers, so want to be as helpful as we can. We strongly recommend immediately disputing any charges for goods not received with your credit card provider or PayPal if you have not done so already. Most credit cards give you a very limited period of typically just a few months to dispute a charge. With PayPal you have six months. If you paid with PayPal using a credit card, you can both dispute via PayPal and also with your credit card provider. If you've already tried disputing the charges and have missed the allowed window to file a dispute, please feel free to contact The Microbrand Store customer service team via the online chat function on our web site, and also let us know your name and email address there. We'll be glad to help try and connect you with the solicitor [lawyer] handling the liquidation so you can potentially request being added to the list of creditors. Candidly, as Page & Cooper Ltd are very much in the red, we don't think there is much likelihood of getting a payout if you go this route but it doesn't hurt to try. The best opportunity to get a refund would be to dispute any charges as quickly as you can.

We also would like everyone to know that we only approached the legally appointed liquidators regarding potentially acquiring Page & Cooper assets well after the company was in liquidation, when we noticed this being discussed in several watch groups. We have never communicated with anyone else associated with this brand or business at any time. We do not know the previous owners of the company and have no association or communication with them, having only dealt with the liquidators. Our payment for the intellectual property we have acquired here was substantial (many thousands of pounds/dollars) which was made direct to an account set up by the liquidators' agents, and this will be used to help pay of some of the monies owed by Page & Cooper Ltd to their creditors, so is we think a good thing.

How we run our own businesses is very different so it will not be business as usual for the Page & Cooper brand moving forwards. For example, The Microbrand Store has no creditors, settles all valid invoices immediately on the spot, and always pays 100% up-front in advance for all watches, and our modus operandi is to do this in advance of the manufacturing order being placed, so no microbrand has ever been out of pocket on our behalf. We don't take on consignment or drop ship and pre-pay and hold all of our own stock. In short, we have already pre-paid for every watch before creating all of our store listings. Just ask any of the microbrands that we carry.

This also means when you are paying us for a watch, your money is not then used to buy the watch. Thus we always happily give immediate 100% refunds to our customers, no questions asked, (beyond identifying which order,) right up until the moment we have your watch ready for shipping and are writing the warranty card or packaging it. This of course includes all of our pre-orders, even though most other retailers will not refund pre-orders. We're not interested in selling you a watch so much as a relationship with you if you're a watch collector. As a result, an unusually high number of our customers are frequent repeat customers. We also test every watch right before shipping, are an authorized dealer for all of our microbrands so offer the full manufacturer's warranty as well as our own supplemental warranty, and provide free shipping on all watches, and a very personal service if you need to help picking a watch or understanding the pros and cons of any timepiece. We've several times needed to step up when a microbrand hasn't delivered on their pre-order promises regarding watch specs or packages, sometimes at great expense to ourselves, including paying for missing items, and always offering full refunds, which is why many customers tell us they prefer to wait and order through The Microbrand Store rather than direct with some microbrands' pre-orders.

So will Page & Cooper remain British? In a sense yes. TimeApps is a US corporation, but it is 100% owned by a British citizen who was born and lived in London and remained a resident there until his late 20s. He later moved to the United States and is now a dual citizen of both countries. We will be changing the site to focus predominantly on all British microbrands, not just ones that we may be retailing, and we have already arranged a UK based watch repair service that will be very convenient to past Page & Cooper customers. Right now the Page & Cooper web site and social media channels will temporarily remain offline while we gain access over the next few weeks to relaunch them. (We've been very busy working on new content.) Our plans also include leveraging our interactions with over 200 different watch microbrands to invite many different microbrands onto the Page & Cooper YouTube channel.

One change you may notice will include moving Page & Cooper away from large Chinese factory brands like AVI-8 or Spinnaker and towards genuine microbrands. On the old web site, we were shocked to read "All watches offered by Page and Cooper come from ateliers which have been personally visited by us and invariably, have fascinating, little known stories behind them." This was clearly not the case! Page & Cooper however did have an eclectic selection of watches that were not mainstream brands and predominantly microbrand focused, and we're going to continue to grow that almost decade-long tradition but with a much clearer focus.
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