Entrepreneur Ruslan Kogan has fired the latest shot in his salvo against Harvey Norman by launching a range of low-cost home appliances.
Kogan’s eponymous online retail firm will make a range of automatic espresso coffee machines, convection microwaves and bagless vacuum cleaners available to Australian consumers.
The move places Kogan in even greater competition with Harvey Norman, a company that it has publicly targeted with an advertising campaign.
Kogan’s decision to aggressively take on Harvey Norman with claims that it provides lower prices than its larger rival garnered plenty of media headlines for the online retailer.
However, although Kogan’s campaign is one of the best examples in recent years of start-ups actively challenging an established industry player, Kogan himself has downplayed the significance of the latest range extension.
“We’ve got our blinkers on when it comes to how we run our business. We know that we do the best research, we’ve got the best processes, and I would not make a business decision as a response to any battle or argument with anyone else,” he told SmartCompany.
“Even though that battle was going on, and these products are all available at Harvey Norman, this is about expansion. People buy them because people want them, and we’re going to have our blinkers on in that regard.”
Despite this, in a press release announcing the new appliances, Kogan says: “The Kogan team have been working very hard to bring out this exciting new range of products. After taking on the big name brands in the electronics and gadget markets, we’re now throwing down the gauntlet to home appliance retailers and manufacturers.”
“We constantly have customers telling us they have a few Kogan products and love them, but wish we would take on the big name brands in home appliances and other industries that have been ripping them off.”
“We’re here to smash the status quo and we’ve done just that today.”