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Mortis Angelus

Mindfactory.de has changed their sales-policy: NO SHIPPING OUTSIDE OF GERMANY!

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Posted · Original PosterOP

One popular site in EU to buy PC-parts from in EU is mindfactory.de; especially if you live in expensive countries like Finland and Sweden (I've lived in both). Their prices are far lower than anything offered in either aforementioned countries. Last time I bought something from them was in November 2016, without any issues and I was really happy with the speed and service of the store.

 

However, yesterday (29 Aug 2017) I tried to make a new order. But it was not possible. When trying to check-out it just said that "Shipping outside of Germany is not possible". I sent an email to their helpdesk and asked the following:

 

59a6b54881dc7_Screenshot2017-08-3014_34_30.png.29bd04233bd6bd170ab41bffbe58eb46.png

 

 

Rather swiftly I received a reply:

59a6b584c21e1_Screenshot2017-08-3014_34_55.png.69e13a1ee4e2f5a453cb07f2c103f612.png

 

 

So it seems like they have completely abandoned the European market, unless you order as a company/entrepreneur that has a valid VAT ID-number.

 

Just thought I'd share this discovery, as I haven't found any other posts on the Internet discussing this matter.


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Posted · Original PosterOP
Just now, WereCat said:

They already were not shipping to all EU countries, just some.

True, but now they have completely stopped any non-German sales.

 

I just don't understand this; why would a company that is popular cut their customer base? Would it not be good for them to have customers on such a scale and have much more sales?


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It's pretty understandable. 

If a company makes sales for more than a certain amount (diiffers a bit depending on currency, but around €13.500/year) they have to pay VAT to that country. And that is a logistical nightmare. 

So they probably found that it wasn't worth it to sell anything outside of Germany. 


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Things like RMA (and the fact that they have to pay back shipping fees in such cases by law, I think), probably makes European wide service way too expensive.


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Posted · Original PosterOP
10 minutes ago, Volbet said:

It pretty understandable. 

If a company makes sales for more than a certain amount (diiffers a bit depending on currency, but around €13.500/year) they have to pay VAT to that country. And that is a logistical nightmare. 

So they probably found that it wasn't worth it to sell anything outside of Germany. 

Well that does make sense. I did not know about that law.

 

However, it would be rather nice then that they didn't even allow non-German, non-entrepreneur customers to register then. Currenty they list a multitude of countries there. Nowhere on the site does it say they have changed these policies.

 

But anyway, just thought I'd inform people. :D


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Thanks for the heads up. This will likely change my future upgrade plans a great deal.


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18 minutes ago, Mortis Angelus said:

However, it would be rather nice then that they didn't even allow non-German, non-entrepreneur customers to register then. Currenty they list a multitude of countries there. Nowhere on the site does it say they have changed these policies.

well, if you ordered something back in 2016 then you are already registered as a customer and i doubt they'd comb through their existing database to remove foreign customers from it. 

 

changing their policies without updating their website to inform about the change is a bit of a dick move though. 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
8 hours ago, Alariel said:

Thanks for the heads up. This will likely change my future upgrade plans a great deal.

Yeah.. I've been lurking for a looong time for the right PC parts to be released on the market, and now when it starts to be time to buy, I can't....

 

You, on the other hand, could basically combine your PC-purchase with a road-trip with family or friends :D:

mindfactory_de.thumb.PNG.5a7c01a3496c40a3d80f8e8df1b8a08b.PNG


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Hmm... Yes, I suppose I could. I've been wanting to check out the Miniatur Wunderland in Hamburg anyway, and from there it's not really that much further. I could probably combine that somehow, maybe with a few other things, make it a total geek-out trip.


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9 hours ago, Mortis Angelus said:

a valid VAT ID-number

Or be like me and borrow your mother's business VAT number :P 


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There are enough alternatives out there so it's not that bad.

Sucks for everyone who wants an RX Vega tho, they were the cheapest in whole germany and a few countries around it.


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Posted · Original PosterOP
6 hours ago, samcool55 said:

There are enough alternatives out there so it's not that bad.

Sucks for everyone who wants an RX Vega tho, they were the cheapest in whole germany and a few countries around it.

Well of course there are alternatives. But I have yet to find anything cheaper than them in EU, which is why it is significant and note-worthy.


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20 hours ago, Mortis Angelus said:

 

So it seems like they have completely abandoned the European market, unless you order as a company/entrepreneur that has a valid VAT ID-number.

The thing with selling to consumers in a different country is that VAT follows destination principle, meaning they would need to adjust pricing depending on consumer location, and liquidate VAT accordingly. 

So, if a consumer in say Sweden (VAT 25%) was paying the price listed on the website for Germany (VAT 19%), they are not making the necessary adjustment, and [conjecture]  it may have got them in trouble. Since VAT is ultimately a consumption tax, dealing exclusively as wholesalers or with anyone who can write hardware off as an intermediate input may make things easier for them. [/conjecture] 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
19 minutes ago, SpaceGhostC2C said:

The thing with selling to consumers in a different country is that VAT follows destination principle, meaning they would need to adjust pricing depending on consumer location, and liquidate VAT accordingly. 

So, if a consumer in say Sweden (VAT 25%) was paying the price listed on the website for Germany (VAT 19%), they are not making the necessary adjustment, and [conjecture]  it may have got them in trouble. Since VAT is ultimately a consumption tax, dealing exclusively as wholesalers or with anyone who can write hardware off as an intermediate input may make things easier for them. [/conjecture] 

I might be totally wrong here, but wasnt the entire purpose of the open borders in EU that there would be no tax-issues when private customers (i.e. not businesses/companies) purchase stuff within EU? 


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1 hour ago, Mortis Angelus said:

I might be totally wrong here, but wasnt the entire purpose of the open borders in EU that there would be no tax-issues when private customers (i.e. not businesses/companies) purchase stuff within EU? 

Nope, just no import/export tariffs. VAT issues still arise - just not for individual consumers bringing things with them (because for non-shipped goods, VAT is allocated at the point of sale). But sales with shipping across the border still requires VAT adjustments (filed under "intra-community acquisitions"). This has even led to a specific type of fraud.

You can find more at: https://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/business/vat/eu-vat-rules-topic/where-tax_en

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I don't think this should be a surprise and I think that is mostly because of the recent spike in GPUs bought.

 

For example they had a long time a KFA GTX 1080 for only 500+ Euros here in Finland the cheapest was at 700+, if you take away second hand from the equation.

 

I think the mining crazies is the reason.


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23 hours ago, Volbet said:

It's pretty understandable. 

If a company makes sales for more than a certain amount (diiffers a bit depending on currency, but around €13.500/year) they have to pay VAT to that country. And that is a logistical nightmare. 

So they probably found that it wasn't worth it to sell anything outside of Germany. 

The general limit is 100.000€ per year. And it isn't that much of a nightmare, plenty of other businesses cope with it just fine. Perhaps Mindfactory just were at the point where they were going above the limit for several countries, but not so far above that it was really worth it to deal with the VAT. Especially since their business seems to be focused on low margin/high volume, which is more vulnerable to added costs.

36 minutes ago, SpaceGhostC2C said:

Nope, just no import/export tariffs. VAT issues still arise - just not for individual consumers bringing things with them (because for non-shipped goods, VAT is allocated at the point of sale). But sales with shipping across the border still requires VAT adjustments (filed under "intra-community acquisitions"). This has even led to a specific type of fraud.

You can find more at: https://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/business/vat/eu-vat-rules-topic/where-tax_en

Depends how much they sell for to each country. If it's below the limit of 100.000€ per year, they can just charge VAT as if the buyer was in the same country (Germany in this instance).

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In case some of you are looking for a replacement, caseking.de has similar prices to mindfactory.de and I was able to ship to Italy from Germany without any problem recently.


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4 hours ago, Sakkura said:

The general limit is 100.000€ per year.

And it isn't that much of a nightmare, plenty of other businesses cope with it just fine. Perhaps Mindfactory just were at the point where they were going above the limit for several countries, but not so far above that it was really worth it to deal with the VAT. Especially since their business seems to be focused on low margin/high volume, which is more vulnerable to added costs.

Depends how much they sell for to each country. If it's below the limit of 100.000€ per year, they can just charge VAT as if the buyer was in the same country (Germany in this instance).

No, that is the limit in Germany. Meaning foreign sellers must register for VAT in Germany if their sales in Germany exceed EUR 100,000. As a German seller, though, Mindfactory would have to register for VAT in each destination. The minimum imposed by VAT regulation is 10 times smaller, and then each country sets its own limit above (or at) that minimum.

Basically, they need to keep track of this list of thresholds in order to apply the distance selling special scheme. A lot of the countries mentioned here are in the 30,000-40,000 range.

 

PS: Just to be clear, no one is saying that it is impossible to sell from one EU country to others. We're just saying there are reasons while a particular company, in this case Mindfactory, may find it optimal not to serve end consumers across the EU, even if it makes sense to other companies.

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2 hours ago, SpaceGhostC2C said:

No, that is the limit in Germany. Meaning foreign sellers must register for VAT in Germany if their sales in Germany exceed EUR 100,000. As a German seller, though, Mindfactory would have to register for VAT in each destination. The minimum imposed by VAT regulation is 10 times smaller, and then each country sets its own limit above (or at) that minimum.

Basically, they need to keep track of this list of thresholds in order to apply the distance selling special scheme. A lot of the countries mentioned here are in the 30,000-40,000 range.

 

PS: Just to be clear, no one is saying that it is impossible to sell from one EU country to others. We're just saying there are reasons while a particular company, in this case Mindfactory, may find it optimal not to serve end consumers across the EU, even if it makes sense to other companies.

That's not just the limit in Germany, other countries have a 100.000€ limit too. None of them have a 13.500€ limit as he claimed.

 

PS: Your PS is just repeating what I already said.

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What are some other good EU websites? 

Don't want to have to pay these 'Swedish prices'.


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2 hours ago, Sakkura said:

That's not just the limit in Germany, other countries have a 100.000€ limit too. None of them have a 13.500€ limit as he claimed.

I've actually linked all limits for all countries... 9_9

I think @Volbet's mistake comes from mixing the thresholds with yet another VAT regime with lower thresholds (first column on the table).

Ah, you gotta love "harmonized" taxes... imagine the non-harmonized ones :P

 

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