CONSUMER TRUST SCHEME EXPANDED
Consumer NZ plans to extend its testing of products and services to cover entire businesses in a bid to drive up standards.
Business will have to meet a strict code of conduct and set of principles promoting fair trading in order to receive its Consumer Trusted accreditation.
Consumer NZ chief executive Sue Chetwin said the accreditation programme aimed to deliver high standards of customer service and consumer confidence.
The programme's criteria was based on eight consumer principles including customer service, returns and refunds, websites, privacy, and fair and clear contracts.
A code of conduct associated with the programme featured a range of clauses a ''trusted'' company agreed to adhere to.
For example if a product worth more than $100 goes on sale within a week of purchase the buyer is entitled to a refund of the difference.
Also a non-perishable product bought from a ''trusted'' business can be exchanged or returned for a full refund within 30 days of purchase if returned in as new condition.
Telecommunications company 2Degrees, online electricity retailer Powershop, internet service provider Inspire Net and shoe retailer Shoe Clinic have already been accredited.
YOUI INSURES NZ
South African insurer Youi has confirmed it is entering the New Zealand market.
The company, part of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed Rand Merchant Insurance group, said in a statement it was investing close to $60 million of capital into its New Zealand arm.
Youi said it knew customers were most frustrated at paying too much, bad service, filling in lengthy paperwork, fine print, and one-size-fits-all products, and promised accountability.
''We invite anyone to post their comments on the Youi Wall to tell us what their experience was like dealing with us and we publish it for all to see.''
Youi's parent company Outsurance is the largest direct insurer in South Africa.
Should the Christchurch City Council sell some of its assets?Related story: Council asset sales mooted to help raise $900m