Is Selling-Out At Stores Good? The Sony PSP

A Reuters article summarizes the first week for US sales of Sony’s PSP portable gaming unit, saying that “the PlayStation Portable, is selling well but is far from sold out at stores nationwide“. Which to me begs the question: Since when did selling out become good business? Selling out, that is running out of units so that would be customers walk away from the store disappointed but still holding their money, sounds to me like a very bad mistake in business planning. Some of those customers might take their money and buy a competitor’s product that is in stock. Reading through the story suggests that Sony strived to put adequate supply in the retain channel to handle demand, and that they had just enough to meet demand, which seems like perfect forecasting if not for the fact that they did sell out in 15 of 150 surveyed stores.. The story further goes on to say that “specialty gaming retailers have already sold through two waves of hardware”, thus indicating that Sony’s logistics and supply-chain are working smoothly. The sales volume estimate is that Sony sold 575,000 of the $249 PSPs in week 1.

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