Chanel Korea caught in flap for selling allegedly used handbag

A Korean customer who purchased a Chanel 2.55 flap bag found someone else's bankbook and credit card inside the bag.
A Korean customer who purchased a Chanel 2.55 flap bag found someone else's bankbook and credit card inside the bag. PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL • The South Korean branch of the French luxury giant Chanel has come under fire for selling an allegedly used bag to a customer, raising concerns over its inventory control and management policy.

Local media outlet News One said a Korean customer bought a Chanel 2.55 flap bag at a department store for seven million won (S$8,500) in April.

She later found someone else's bankbook and credit card inside the bag.

The bankbook and credit card had been issued in March, a month before the woman bought her bag.

"I asked Chanel if anyone had purchased and returned the bag, but the company said the product's serial number showed it had no purchase history," the bag's buyer was quoted as saying by local media.

Chanel Korea said it has no clue how that had happened, and ruled out the possibility that a store employee may have borrowed and used the bag. The company offered the customer a new bag in July.

Industry insiders said such an occurrence is almost impossible and very rare.

Chanel Korea said it has no clue how that had happened and ruled out the possibility that a store employee may have borrowed and used the bag. The company offered the customer a new bag in July.

"If that product had been returned, it is possible to find someone's belongings in the bag. But if it was never sold before, it is very difficult to find out why (belongings were found from inside the bag)," said an industry insider.

Following the news report, South Korean customers expressed displeasure. "Considering Korean customers' high loyalty towards the brand, I hope Chanel Korea takes responsibility," said one 20-something woman upon hearing the news.

"Korean customers should take collective action such as a boycott to make sure that foreign companies such as Chanel and BMW do not look down on Korean customers and to teach them a lesson," an anonymous online user commented on a related news article.

KOREA HERALD/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 28, 2018, with the headline 'Chanel Korea caught in flap for selling allegedly used handbag'. Print Edition | Subscribe