We just received the notice that the price for our current Enterprise Level account would be doubling from $159 to $324 a month. The price increase includes a subscription increase to $229 and then another $95 to access our existing carrier accounts (FedEx). I'm sure everyone else received a similar notice, just thought I'd kick off a thread here to talk about it.
There's also an extra $0.08/label fee as well: https://help.shipstation.com/hc/en-us/articles/4408953242395
There's been a lengthy discussion over at: https://community.shipstation.com/t5/ShipStation-Features/Extra-20-month-to-add-Fedex-to-my-list-of-...
I strongly suggest that you talk to your attorney, and notify your carrier account managers. This is clearly anti-competitive practice designed to force users into paying more for a service that was previously free or leverage a service that ShipStation receives royalties and commissions from... This is ridiculous.
Not much can be done from a legal standpoint. First, $160 a month isn't that much to call a lawyer about. However, it *does* make a lot of sense for FedEx to get involved on the $95 surcharge. This will impact thousands of small businesses and is pretty anti-competitive. I gave our FedEx reps the heads up on it.
No, the point is, that this can reach a class action status since it IS so anti-competitive. The $160 a month increase is what it is. It sucks but, when you account for the thousands of customers this impacts and how it impacts the business of the UPS and FedEx accounts too, that's the reason to contact your lawyer.
You should also notify the anti-trust hotline at: email@example.com
Oh that's a fair point. Here's a boilerplate for anyone else who wants to let the FTC know:
Dear Federal Trade Commission,
I am writing to bring your attention to what appears to be a significant antitrust issue concerning Auctane, a shipping and logistics conglomerate.
Over the past year, Auctane has acquired numerous shipping companies, including but not limited to ShipStation, Stamps.com , Endicia, Shipengine, and Global Post (https://auctane.com/products/ ). These acquisitions, in themselves, may not pose a concern. However, the manner in which Auctane has manipulated its new market power is a cause for worry.
Auctane recently announced rate hikes of 100% across these platforms, a move that may cause substantial financial strain on the numerous businesses and consumers that rely on their services. More worryingly, they have also instituted a monthly fee for users to access outside carriers such as FedEx and DHL. This blatant discouragement of competition seems designed to force customers into using Auctane's own pre-negotiated rates with USPS and UPS.
The significant market consolidation and pricing practices Auctane has demonstrated are deeply concerning. Not only does this appear to lessen competition in the shipping and logistics industry, but it also seems to unfairly disadvantage tens of thousands of companies that depend on these services for their businesses. It is my belief that these actions amount to anti-competitive practices and are deserving of an antitrust investigation.
A healthy competitive market is crucial for both businesses and consumers. It fosters innovation, drives down prices, and ensures quality service delivery. Auctane's actions appear to be detrimental to these principles.
I urge the Federal Trade Commission to investigate Auctane's actions and intervene as necessary to protect consumers, businesses, and the overall health of the shipping and logistics industry.
Thank you for your attention to this matter. I am available to provide any additional information that may assist in your investigation.
[YOUR NAME, TITLE, and CONTACT INFO - Always include a physical address too]