Newcastle's Peripherals Plus outlet is yet another NSW computer store to have disappeared leaving bemused customers without local support. Additionally, the NSW Department of Fair Trading (DFT) has announced that CNN Promotions, a suspiciously cheap computer supply company, has gone into liquidation just six weeks after it began trading.
Management at Peripherals Plus' remaining office in Sydney stated the closure of the Cardiff store on June 19 was due to an expiring lease it had maintained for four and half years. However, there was covert action involved in the closure with some customers and the sole employee claiming they were given no warning about the pending closure.
The phone has been disconnected and a note on the door now directs enquiries to the Sydney office, advising that all warranty and support issues will be handled from there.
Kerry Cassel, marketing manager for the systems assembler and retailer, told ARN that all the stock has been moved to Sydney and there are no plans to open another office in Newcastle. She said the shopping village where the office was situated is now an enclave of medical businesses and that passing trade had suffered as a result.
"At the moment we are looking at our options and we are not sure whether it will be best to restructure or centralise in our Sydney office," said Cassel. "It wasn't a very busy office, everything mainly came through Sydney including all tech support and sales calls."
In regards to CNN Promotions, a Department of Fair Trading spokesperson said the fair trading watchdog has been keeping an eye on CNN ever since a rash of advertisements, spread all over the state, offered "very cheap computer and accessory packages through the media".
Advertisements faxed to ARN from readers showed these promotions were offering a free upgrade to Pentium II, 12 months after purchasing a system, a sales incentive that would have generated significant interest.