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Dear Customer,

As a result of the increasing presence of the internet and its impact on the traditional trading environment we feel compelled, for the good of our valued customers, to re-appraise our internet policy.

Since our inception in 1980 we have taken care to maintain a certain level of brand identity and exclusivity and the appointment of stockists has always been carefully considered. Consequently we work with an enviable plethora of fine retailers who take care in marketing and promoting our clocks.

However, this pattern of trading which has served us well for many years has been heavily disrupted by the arrival of the internet which does not allow the same level of brand protection and is in some cases is undermining our core brand values. As a result, we now feel it necessary to address this and introduce a new policy for supplying online customers. Please read the enclosed policy, as this may affect you.

The Policy

i.  Existing customers wishing to start selling Thomas Kent clocks online:
You are required to apply for approval to our Customer Services team at customerservices@artmarketing.co.uk. We will endeavour to process the application as quickly and efficiently as possible and hopefully will approve all applications, although we cannot guarantee this. Our brand protection criteria is available to view within this document.
ii. Existing customers who are currently selling Thomas Kent clocks online:
We will be assessing all our online customers over the next 6 months for compliance with our brand protection criteria. If we feel that you do not meet these criteria we will not grant permission to continue selling Thomas Kent clocks online and shall be entitled to withdraw supply.
iii. New customers:
We are always keen to supply new customers and welcome you into the fold of Thomas Kent. However, only those websites which meet our brand protection criteria will be successful.
iv. Third Party platforms:
Because of the potential negative impact on our brand when Thomas Kent clocks are sold through third party platforms (Amazon, Tesco, eBay and other such internet marketing sites) we will be withdrawing supply to customers using these sites.
This is a necessary action in order to protect our loyal customers who do uphold our brand values.
In endeavouring to act in a fair and reasonable way we will allow a 6 month grace period within which you may sell through the stock you are holding but after 1st July 2015 we will no longer supply customers operating on these platforms.
If you require clarification on this, or you are considering using a third party platform other than your own please contact customerservices@artmarketing.co.uk or call us on 01582 794541.
v. Brand Protection Criteria:
  • that a retailer has at least one or more bricks and mortar shops (or at least satisfy the high standards which are set for websites);
  • a requirement that customers do not visit the retailer’s online shop through a third party platform carrying a name or logo from a third party platform;
  • banning advertisements or banners on the website capable of damaging the dealer’s reputation or image of its products on the retailer’s site;
  • updating the website regularly to reflect the reality of the retailer’s stock;
  • prices for the products must be up-to-date and therefore correct and clearly defined;
  • a requirement to maintain and foster the excellent reputation of the Company;
  • ensuring any website used by the retailer is compatible with the luxury status of the brand (professionally designed and technically always up-to-date);
  • ensuring the layout and image of the website (including ensuring that the latest images and styling of the products are shown, such as the clock face at “ten to two”) and positioning of the products in the shop are suitable to protect and promote the supplier’s brand image and reputation;
  • that the retailer be available to customers by email and/or another customer service function and at particular times and with a particular style and level of service;
  • ensuring that there are no links to other sites, save those of the dealer or other approved distributors;
  • not to supply to other retailers who do not fulfil these qualitative criteria;
  • conduct fair and ethical sales and marketing practices;
  • a requirement to comply with all consumer laws in force from time to time in place in the retailer’s territory;
  • that all images relating to Thomas Kent clocks are supplied by Art marketing Ltd and may not be copied from our website, catalogues or other websites.
  • Whilst these criteria have been deemed necessary, great care and consideration has been taken to ensure that they are proportionate, qualitative and equitable.