Let us approach this topic with integrity and honesty. Please raise your hand if you are a proud owner of New York’s latest luxury item? I am not talking Manolo Blahniks or Tiffany & Co keys I am talking counterfeits! My hand is up and I know yours is too! Well congratulations counterfeit owners, these knockoffs are finally achieving luxury status. A special crime unit in New York has police raiding locations in Manhattan’s Chinatown for counterfeit goods. Within the first two days of the operation $ 1 million worth of fake handbags and watches were seized.
Sure blame New York, but the black-market knock- off industry is a global issue. China’s virtual explosion in counterfeit cell phones, known as “shanzai”, sells counterfeit phone for less than $20. The “Hi-Phone”, for example is openly sold as a knock-off of Apple’s iPhone. China has yet to launch its own citywide raid, despite complaints from legitimate manufacturers.
In today’s money tight market, the cheap fakes of Chanel, Rolex, Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Tiffany are more popular than ever. The expensive price tags, brand association and luxury status are what drive demand. The raids are one way brands are reclaiming their images and brands. Nevertheless,no raid of any stature will control the world of counterfeits until consumers stop buying them.