Brand names are more than just a label. They are a guarantee that you are getting what you pay for and are essentially a promise of a certain level of quality. Unfortunately, the more popular a brand is, the more counterfeits there are, resulting in inferior quality products that look almost as good as the real thing.

Monster/Dr Dre Beats is the sixth most counterfeited brand in the world, and South Africa is seeing the same glut of inferior copies that have been flooding the international markets. Monster and Beats have been working on a strategy to stamp out this problem, with a top legal firm in the US contracted and an ex-FBI agent employed by Monster directly to pursue legal prosecution of transgressors.

Local distributor of the product, Phoenix Distribution, is doing its bit to ensure that consumers buying the products have access only to the superior quality real deal. “We are aware of the popularity and demand for Beats, and are doing everything we can on our side to make sure that we stamp out the sale of the grey or fake Beats completely,” says Simon Campbell-Young, CEO of Phoenix Distribution.

“We have already seen some major successes, with 3700 units of counterfeit Beats confiscated in South Africa in the last two months.”

In addition to an education campaign to all its partners, Phoenix Distribution is going through a formal process of registering all of its Beats retailers as formal Beats resellers. The public then will be able to check online to verify if the purchase of their pair of Beats is from an authorised Beats reseller.

“Another very exciting development is the serialisation of every pair of Beats. In future, a consumer or Beats reseller will be able to enter the serial number off the Beats carton in question and the website will confirm if the product is original or fake. The serial number will be printed on each Beats carton and the serial number will be linked to the region directly,” says Campbell-Young. “This is an on-going process and we will advise when every pair of Beats in circulation can be checked online. We are confident that this situation will be eliminated completely in the near future thanks to these types of initiatives.”

Phoenix Distribution urges consumers or retailers who have any information regarding fake Beats products to contact the company, who will pass it on to the legal authorities.