Fishpond, a website that claims to be New Zealand’s biggest online store, has been fined $50,000 for selling products that don’t comply with New Zealand regulations. The site sells books, toys, homeware, and sports beauty products mainly sourced from overseas.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) noticed the illegal goods on the Fishpond site.
They spotted a dog tracking device and digital walkie talkie for sale and bought them on a hunch to investigate further.
The Garmin DC50 dog tracking device was found not to work with New Zealand’s radio system.
MBIE compliance officer Fadia Mudafar says it has the potential to interfere with other services, which creates a safety issue.
“Radiotelephone services are used by people in transport, forestry and logging operations and breaks in the signal would result in poor communications with a risk for misunderstanding. Any interference is a significant safety risk,” She says.
The walkie talkie bought operated on a radio band that is strictly for aeronautical use in New Zealand.
The plug was also found not to comply with New Zealand’s safety standards.
Fishpond has previously received five warnings since 2011 about radio communication equipment that doesn’t comply with New Zealand law.
This isn’t the first time the company has been in trouble – it has also been charged twice since 2013 by other Government bodies for breaching the rules.
Fishpond is an Australian and New Zealand online store based in Auckland.
Daniel Robertson founded it in 2004. In 2013, it was making around 20,000 sales every day.
It says its mission is to build the best place for Australians and Kiwis to buy online.
“Australians and New Zealanders are missing out on the convenience, selection and prices of online shops found overseas. The big international players have ignored this part of the world because the market is too small. Local traditional retailers don’t want to risk a large investment online. We have taken up the challenge and will work hard to bring the people of Australasia a quality and convenient online shopping experience down under,” its website says.
It previously was the recipient of a Westpac business excellence award in 2007, as well as being a part of the Deloitte Fast 50 in the same year.
The company was fined in the Manukau District Court under the Radiocommunications Act and Radiocommunications Regulations Act.