Saudi authorities have shut down a large manufacturer and distributor of counterfeit cartridges for HP printers. A raid, conducted in August 2021. targeted counterfeiting facilities hidden on a residential property located in the Dammam Metropolitan Area. As a result of this collaboration between HP & Saudi officials, a total of ca. 13,000 illicit items were confiscated.
The production and distribution of counterfeit goods is not only an illegal activity, but it also negatively impacts the businesses of both resellers and distributors. A recent study by the Organisation for European Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) shows that international trade in counterfeit and pirated goods represents up to 3.3% of world trade, or as much as USD $509 billion.
In the European Union (EU), counterfeit and pirated goods amount to up to 6.8% of imports or as much as EUR €121 billion. The report also notes that counterfeiting causes companies to lose revenue, leading to direct and indirect job losses, in addition to lost revenue for the government.
Although counterfeit cartridges may look like genuine HP cartridges, they do not provide the high print quality, reliability, and yields which consumers have come to expect from original HP products. Instead, using counterfeit cartridges can carry significant risks. These can include cartridges which fail prematurely or do not work at all, and even result in damaged printers as result of ink or toner leakages.
Due to their often-low-grade print quality which require numerous re-prints, counterfeits are likely to waste resources such as paper and energy. Additionally, it is unlikely that counterfeit cartridges are recycled once they are at the end of life. By comparison over 4.7 billion recycled plastic bottles have been used by HP to manufacture new Original HP Ink Cartridges in addition to more than 875 million Original HP Ink and Toner Cartridges have been recycled by customers with HP Planet Partners.
In addition, HP offers its customers and partners “Customer Delivery Inspections”. This is a unique protection service which helps them identify and avoid potential counterfeits. The inspections are carried out at the customers’ premises and are free of charge for customers. If counterfeits are suspected, the inspector will ask for the name of the supplier and a copy of the proof of purchase to identify where the counterfeit products came from. These inspections are a key way of protecting HP’s valued customers from poor quality fakes, which may have worked their way into the supply chain.