Australian Newsagency Blog

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Newsagents infuriated by IPS supply of colouring books

Mark Fletcher
August 23rd, 2014 · 25 Comments

ipscolourFairfax owned IPS has made a dreadful decision to scale out colouring books to newsagents. We can source similar quality colouring book products which will carry a 50% and more gross profit so there is no commercial sense for us to sell these titles on magazine margins.

IPS management is not responding. They need to as there are newsagents saying this move is the straw that has broken their back and they are planning on closing their IPS account.

Colouring books? Seriously?

The person who agreed to this ought to be put on notice.

To the supplier using IPS to distribute colouring books to newsagents: stop! We have excellent sources of supply of colouring books that enable jus to make 50% and more.

Using the magazine scale our model for poor margin product is wrong. Stop it.


Category: magazine distribution · Magazine oversupply · Ugh!

25 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Annette // Aug 23, 2014 at 9:52 AM

    What next??? Toys, gifts, confectionery? . Is there any way that we can keep the Newspapers distributed by IPS and stop delivery of all magazines? We do sell good numbers of The Winning Post & other racing papers but most of the magazines from IPS are duds, tying up our cash.
    These (not welcome, not requested) colouring books cannot be returned until 17th November. Delayed billing until 21st Sept does not do a thing to make us want it on our shelves.


  • 2 shauns // Aug 23, 2014 at 10:29 AM

    Finally you have a problem with IPS . Myself and others have been complaining about IPS for ages and we are told call them up they are good to deal with ,well turns out they are the same as the other 2 . So no early return on colouring books keep for 3 issue


  • 3 Garry // Aug 23, 2014 at 11:39 AM

    Mark first negative comment on IPS that I can remember.
    Now they might not be a protected species.


  • 4 Mark Fletcher // Aug 23, 2014 at 1:03 PM

    Shaun & Garry, this post is not about something I have experienced. I did not receive the colouring books. My experience remains as stated previously. However, for the broader channel, based on what many newsagents have said, IPS needs to change or they will see accounts closed.


  • 5 Steve // Aug 23, 2014 at 1:52 PM


    There really is something fundamentally wrong if IPS is pushing all these hard sell titles on small newsagents (I received both bush friends and dinosaur adventures not to mention 4 copies of some crap called tuff trucks) and a large city newsagent like yourself is missing out. It reeks of differential treatment by IPS and they need to come clean on their policy regarding this.I’ve asked IPS for an explanation of how they operate but they just ignore it.
    In the past I’ve considered dropping IPS and subscribing direct to the publisher for the 3 titles I actually want. The problem is the subscription prices are only the same as wholesale and knowing my luck the day I sign a 12 month subcription will be the day a customer will cancel their putaway.


  • 6 Mark Fletcher // Aug 23, 2014 at 1:55 PM

    Steve I agree re these titles. IPS has a case to answer. That they are not responding to newsagents is a mistake.

    This issue has got me looking at my own IPS account and I’d note that I am on the fence about keeping it.


  • 7 Carol // Aug 23, 2014 at 2:07 PM

    I closed my account with them a while ago. They were just too rigged with returns and supply arrangements. I had about 2 magazines that sold I or 2 copies of so just not worth the cost of maintaining an account. I actually had a credit with them and they have goggled it up with a charge for some mag they say they supplied in about 2012.


  • 8 Steve // Aug 23, 2014 at 2:16 PM

    Thats the other consideration if you close your IPS account. Will you ever get your money back on these crap mags your holding or do you get shafted with a useless credit note which fairfax refuses to apply to another account.I’d want to know that before I ditched them.


  • 9 Mark Fletcher // Aug 23, 2014 at 2:39 PM

    Steve if you close the account you would get your money back. IPS would have no choice. The law would be in your side.


  • 10 rick // Aug 23, 2014 at 3:00 PM

    I rang them when I received the colouring books, they said they had had a few phone calls about them, they suggested I post them back, I suggested I will be topping them and returning them with this weeks returns, and politely advised them that they are overstepping the mark by sending out that crap. I won’t be paying another bill till I see the credits on my statement, if they cut me off so be it.


  • 11 Rowan // Aug 24, 2014 at 9:29 AM

    A long time ago I negotiated with IPS to only send the titles I select and nothing else. If I wish to look up there current offering and try something new that relates to my market I can. There is no problem. The days of being dictated too are almost over, ask, negotiate, hassle, fight for your business.


  • 12 Cris // Aug 24, 2014 at 5:37 PM

    Interestingly we received these and as they just turned up we rang them and asked that they be returned immediately, A truck arrived to pick up all 8 copies about 3pm that afternoon. Would have cost more to pick them up than the wholesale cost of the things.


  • 13 shauns // Aug 24, 2014 at 7:46 PM

    Rowan I tried that but they told me that my account wwould be closed if I did not accept what ever tittles they sent for at least 3 issues


  • 14 Russell // Aug 24, 2014 at 9:03 PM

    On what terms did IPS become a distributor within the newsagency channel? Newsagents struggle now with current contracts – GG, Network – IPS is a leach on newsagent’s businesses.


  • 15 ken // Aug 25, 2014 at 12:29 PM

    Ips are only following in the footsteps of the other 2 distributors,I got rid of them ages ago after they sent me 10 chinese daily and 10 tarmac mags for 3 months.Just what all little south coast newsagencies want.they know exactly what gotch and network get away with and will do the same.


  • 16 shauns // Sep 4, 2014 at 7:14 AM

    IPS over supply yet again after many emails
    4wd touring
    2 return 1
    2 return 1
    ohhh hello send me 7 …..;..


  • 17 Brendan // Sep 19, 2014 at 7:02 PM

    Beware of the IPS calendar offer made tonight via email. This is an opt out offer on firm sale calendars and they only give us the weekend to act on this. I have emailed them that I wont accept stock as there appears to be no facility on their web sit yet to cancel order. NO FIRM SALE product from ANY magazine supplier should be opt out, it should only be opt in. This is unconscionable treatment of newsagents.


  • 18 Jenny // Sep 19, 2014 at 7:12 PM

    Brendan where in email did it state firm sale?
    I received an email to opt in for City2Surf as a firm sale but can’t see where wine calendar states firm sale.


  • 19 Mark Fletcher // Sep 19, 2014 at 7:57 PM

    I’ve not seen the email – please email me


  • 20 shauns // Sep 20, 2014 at 5:39 AM

    I didn’t see that in the email I received .Mark it was in the IPS report


  • 21 Mark Fletcher // Sep 20, 2014 at 6:58 AM

    I didn’t see it either. Another newsagent shared an email they received yesterday afternoon.


  • 22 Gary // Sep 20, 2014 at 7:31 AM

    got this via email on Fri:

    Wine Selector Calendar 2015
    40% Commission on every sold copy

    ON SALE: 26/09/2014
    Distribution: QLD, NSW, VIC, SA
    Cover Price $19.95
    Publication Placement: Food & Wine Premium

    The Wine Selector Calendar 2015 – a delicious marriage of palate and plate! Featuring 12 delectable recipes by Lyndey Milan OAM with perfectly matching wines.

    Selector Magazine is bringing out the annual calendar for 2015 which will be on sale Friday 26/09/2014.

    Our supply team has carefully allocated based on supply and sale of Selector Magazine. Newsagents will receive 40% commission for every copy sold.

    Please be aware that allocations have been finalised, however, Newsagents will be able to adjust their supply in IPSonline over the weekend. The supply will be locked down at 10am on Monday 22/09/2014.

    Kind regards,
    The IPS Team


  • 23 shauns // Sep 20, 2014 at 7:42 AM

    that’s good I shouldn’t get it because I have never sold a copy in 3 issues even though I have had a supply increase on the last issue .

    Looks like the real IPS is coming out ,looks like their terms are not so great after all


  • 24 Mark Fletcher // Sep 20, 2014 at 9:15 AM

    See my blog post from this morning on this:


  • 25 Brendan // Sep 20, 2014 at 12:42 PM

    Your right Jenny, at closing last night when I read this I thought it was firm sale but it doesn’t like like it is. Regardless of this, in my opinion they have tried to sneak this under the radar by notifying us on a Friday night and expecting a response over the week end when a lot of us are concentrating on the shop floor, not admin functions and at any rate any product like this should be opt in NOT opt out.


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