Which studio lighting to get
As for "daylight robbery", you have to realize that in the US, PCB sells the Einsteins direct from factory. In the UK and other countries, there's an additional layer of distribution. The distributors buy at a minimal discount (I think it's $30/head or something insanely low like that because there's not much margin in direct sales products).
Then you guys in the UK have much higher taxes, import duties, etc. The distributor has to have space in a warehouse to store the stuff, hire phone/support personnel (aka overhead).
I'm a fan of ABs, but have spent too many years in marketing to buy the bunk that direct sales results in lower prices compared to selling through distributors. The costs of marketing must be borne by whomever markets the product--manufacturer or distributor.
Those people who answer Buff's phones, who pack and ship product to customers, and who repair broken Bees are all in addition to the factory workers. Warehousing, promotion, advertising, and sales and service all add to the final selling price of any product, regardless of who is doing the Marketing. In fact, an organization specializing in distribution can often operate at lower-cost than a manufacturer trying to operate a distribution facility.
I agree that taxes, duties, transportation, (and currency risk) are extra costs that must be borne by foreign buyers. Those vary from country to country. Based on some (likely out-dated) numbers I recall, I would guess a 15-30% higher selling price in the UK and Europe for US made products. Assembly in the EU might reduce that.
My point is that the price premium is not because of a distributor, it is mostly because of the costs of getting product into other countries.
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