Sunday, July 13, 2014

Making money out of paper

And now for something totally different. Once upon a time, I used to be a business blogger. But then a few things happened along the way and I wrote mostly about the country, politics and related things. So, this is a post that is more like the old days.

A few days ago, someone gifted us this.

Nothing much. Just a box of chocolates, masquerading as a gift box of chocolates - there are no pretensions here - the box is truthful and says what it contains and all that. And these are not those fancy gilt wrapped or home made chocolates, they are just normal, usual Cadburys chocolates hiding under the box. Which is a bit of a letdown really because these are not gilt wrapped in colourful foil with fancy names for flavours and fancy shapes, but when one opens this box, all one gets are usual Cadburys chocolates in their usual wrappers. There is no duplicity here - what they say is what you get. (For lazy gifters I say - please pickup a box of authentic mithai, not boxed chocolate - even Haldiram Soan Papdi is beter. But that is another rant for another day.)

And the better half picked up this and read through and found this at the back. Interestingly, she observed, this box is priced at Rupees 150, MRP and contains this.
The individual units add up to an MRP of Rs. 115 only. Which means, the customer is paying 150 for chocolates worth only 115. And that means that the company is making money on packaging. 

Let me explain. Leaving margins, aside, selling 115 MRP of chocolates as they are will get them 115.  But putting 115 rupees MRP of chocolates in another layer of plastic and cardboard, get them 35 rupees more - without selling a single gram of chocolate extra! How cool is that. The company which makes chocolate, makes money off paper as well.

And you dear customer are the idiot. 

(If you chose to buy such things that are the epitome of these days. Mediocrity giftwrapped in exotica. You can find it everywhere. Fancy names, fancy locations and very often fancy prices. And instead of gifting somebody something thoughtful, you walk into the nearest store and buy chocolate masquerading as a gift box of mithai. Yes, surely you care about the person you gift it to - they will 'appreciate'. Unless, of course, you intend it that way. And yes, this is also another rant for another day)

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