Thursday, 20 June 2013

Dealing with Leodis Sports Management Ltd

Update: See the end of this post, and extra comments added in [brackets]
Further update: The tickets did arrive and we had a fun day
Further update: They refuse to refund the full booking fee now

It is not often I am caught out, but this is one occasion that I was, and I have to say that I would suggest, in my opinion, that you never ever deal with a company called LSM (Leodis Sports Management Limited).

We have arranged, what I hope will be a fun event, for staff. A trip to an F1 race.

We agreed the price and details on the phone, there was some "urgency" implied (limited availability, etc) and a discount agreed.

The paperwork comes through, for signing. I made the fatal mistake of not reading it all. Always read the small print - ALWAYS! We had, after all, agreed the price, and we knew what we are getting. We have the invoice with the total as agreed on it. We were only being asked to pay what was on the invoice. The invoice did not say "deposit" or any such to indicate it was not the full amount.

They have a term buried in the second page of the small print that a ten percent "booking fee", on top of the agreed price, will be invoiced separately four weeks before the event. [By small print, I don't just mean the print was actually small on the paper copy I signed (it was) but that it is in with a long list of other detailed terms, known as "small print".]

Hiding something as important as a 10% price hike in the small print, not including it in the original quote or invoice or payment request or phone call, but waiting to get paid the bulk, non refundable, amount before then telling you, and before handing over the tickets. That is seriously underhand, in my opinion.

What worries me now is whether the whole thing turns in to a scam somehow. [It was not]

At this stage we have no choice but to pay. Then we start digging out the call recordings and emails. If this was sold on a misrepresentation it may be worth suing. In any case, I am really kicking myself.

[Update: We queried this and were told that it is as per the contract terms. Then I said I had listened to the call recording and confirmed that I had agreed the total price "all in". Now they have replied offering a refund of the extra charge. They have now gone back on their word and are refusing to refund the booking fee in full. I still think the way this was done in the contract terms is underhand, and an important lesson of read the small print but the other lesson here is keep the call recordings :-) So if you choose to deal with these people make sure you are very very clear on the terms. I'll report back on the event itself.]


6 comments:

  1. Wow.. That's nasty. IMO It's already a scam in that they lied about the cost, and if they have to do that to do business their product can't be that good.. But I hope it's not completely fictional, for your sake!

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  2. You were lucky. I used to live in Holland and when we planned to move back to the UK we picked what we thought was a reputable company, Glasswells. Price was agreed, dates confirmed and we were happy.

    Truck turned up (too small) and about 95% of our stuff was loaded on - bear in mind this is ~ 2 days before we completed on the sale and took about 1 1/2 days to load up. We had to skip a load of stuff because there was just no way to organize additional storage. Anyway everything loaded onto the truck and the senior guy hands me the paperwork to sign. Price had almost doubled. I crossed out the figure and put what was originally agreed and then signed it (what choice was there?)

    Not only did they charge the unagreed amount they also went back on the original agreement for storage (until we could find a suitable home in the UK). We were advised that there wasn't really much we could do about it - They had our stuff and wouldn't deliver it unless we paid.

    I know it's childish but I give them the finger everytime I see one of their trucks.

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  3. They get very impatient in car rental places as the queue forms behind you whilst you read the small print.

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    Replies
    1. So they should either have less small print, or send you the contract beforehand so you can already have read the small print and signed it before collecting the car.

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    2. I do this a lot - reading small print when given to me. You can see them get slightly annoyed as it takes so long, especially if there are people waiting. but as Grahammmm says, take it out or let me read before hand.

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  4. I had this sort of shenanigans this week. A supplier who I'd agreed a fixed price trial with, dropped into conversation (very casually) that there was something I just needed to sign off on (which was something that had extra cost of course).

    They were quite surprised when I suggested we'd agreed a fixed price trial and thus an extra charge wasn't "fixed price" (it wasn't that I'd changed the spec or requirement).

    Right now they're "thinking about it" and will come back to me. For me it's very simple, either do what you said "at the fixed price" or refund my money and call it quits.

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