(Picture courtesy of the Wall Street Journal)
This post might be seen to be a little overboard with regards to its content, but bear with me if you please.
Last week a friend of mine received an email from Discovery Mail Vitality advertising some soccer products people can buy from them to celebrate the 2010 FIFA World Cup being in South Africa.
Here’s my rant: why the heck are Discovery Health, a health insurance company, depriving street-sellers, who have at last found something that is selling like crazy (and have an opportunity to actually make some decent money for a change) of their customers by selling the same products?
Discovery’s principle in doing this baffles me.
It’s not like they are providing me a value-add by selling me soccer stuff. What the heck does an SA flag mirror cover have to do with health insurance? NOTHING. Why’s Discovery selling them? TO MAKE MONEY, not because they probably give a hoot about the soccer or the country. What are they effectively doing? Depriving the street seller of some market share. They are effectively depriving poor people of a market opportunity.
I believe in free market, but also in integrity. I think that even something like this puts a company’s integrity under question. If they wanted to celebrate soccer fever then they could have run a competition or sent out free fan-packs to certain clients or given out tickets to poor people or something. But no, rather they sought to oust the man in the street by taking a big market share from them and selling the exact same product at a more expensive price. Way to go Discovery. Nice way to love our country.