Is there a definitive answer as to why Eneloops are so hard to find?

greg11

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Did Sanyo jump the gun in terms of their business model, releasing a hot product before setting up a distribution network? Are the big brands squeezing retailers and forcing them to block Sanyo from their stores? What's going on? I feel like there must be some kind of reason why what seems to be the best battery out there is so damn hard to come by. Why should I be looking at Duracells and President's Choice brands to see if they're rebadged Eneloops? Why aren't Eneloops right there on the shelf for me to buy!!!!

Someone, somewhere messed something up.
 

weez82

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Go ask the average customer if they know what an eneloop is or what an LSD battery is. My guess is they will look at you like you're a weirdo and then walk away. Unfortunately there just isnt a market for them in retail stores. But really, why is that a problem for you? They are very easy to find online and retail stores jack the prices way up.
 

sxl168

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I picked up a 10 pack of AA from Costco last week for $22 (AAA's are $20). They have been carrying them consistently and I grabbed this last pack because I've never seen them this cheap. They have the light blue and dark blue wrappers.
 

reppans

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I was in REI today checking what would still be around a few hours before closing and Hurricane Sandy. Alk/Lithium AA, AAA and CR123s all gone. C size, 9V and Eneloops were available, really does go to show you people don't what they are.... pre-charged and cheaper than lithium primaries.
 

enki_ck

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Have you checked for Duraloops? Duracell rechargeable batteries with a white top are actually just re-branded Eneloops. Only one store here carries Eneloops but they all carry Duraloops. Just don't buy the black top ones, not the same thing. Here's a pic of the white top. The body has some green on top of the usual black. But yes, I buy mine online too.

P907002.jpg
 
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SaraAB87

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I haven't found a store here that carries eneloops yet. I am guessing there is some exclusive agreements with stores on what batteries they can sell. Most gamers know about them and have them in their Wii and Xbox 360 controllers though. Duraloops are almost everywhere here though and are very easy to find. It's also almost impossible to get a decent charger here, for that one must go to Amazon.
 

DanglerB

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Its an expensive premium battery most people have no clue about why they should buy them, so not on the store shelf, but anyplace that specializes in battery stuff likely has them, camera etc. stores. Every square inch of shelf space in a retail store is tracked for how much profit it makes, so without a big ad campaign a new product may find it slow going.

I get the feeling technology is improving incrementally and nobody wants to have a huge amount of old product in the pipeline. I don't think I will be buying anything but Eneloop types for normal AA AAA applications.
 

Shadowww

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Here it's pretty easy to find Duraloops but impossible to find Eneloops, except for specialized shops (e.g. photo stores.. but they sell them overpriced as hell).
 

baterija

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The Duraloop may provide part of the rationale. Contracting cells to a company that has name recognition in the US market may be Sanyo's strategy. A sale is a sale. No need to push distribution channels to get an Eneloop on the shelf to compete with a Duracell re-badged one. When they signed the contract with Duracell there may have been clauses in the contract as well that limited the distribution. It's a tough sell in general getting the public to buy rechargeable, let alone LSD. Getting more on the shelves for the tiny audience that understands LSD cells and knows enough to pick Eneloops over others just might not be worth the costs of getting them there. Sanyo's ultimate goal is maximizing profit after all not maximizing retail space.
 

H-Man

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People don't seem understand the technology. It seems that people can't wrap their heads around the concept that a more expensive cell is cheaper in the long run provided that a proper charger is used. I'll reccomend duraloops when I have the chance, but people don't seem to care about anything but price when it comes to battery technology. People are a lot more likely to buy the eneloops if you explain it to them in simple terms: The cells are almost magic, the device will run like it has fresh batteries until the batteries need to be charged, a good charger will make the cells last for years of constant use, the batteries don't lose charge as fast as akalines, they don't lea-- "so what charger do you reccomend to go with the cells?" At this point, people have 3 packs of eneloops or duraloops in the basket and are looking at chargers. (I need to get around to building a good cheap single cell per channel charger with an AVR micro controller and a "I think this cell should be tossed but I'll charge it anyway because I might be wrong and you really need it charged tonight" light.)
 

AnAppleSnail

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If consumers don't understand technology, perhaps the technologists don't understand the consumerism ;)

In short, it takes a lot of money, time, expertise, and many sales connections to put a product in a store. Eneloop can either:

*Hire a sales division and spend a few years setting up sales
*Hire packaging designers and spend a few years producing brand presence
*Pay out buckets of cash to slip their cells onto Energizer/Duracell's shelves (See below)
*Hire advertising space and try to sell a product to the masses on technical merit
*Set up distribution network and get long-term contracts
*Compete with their partners who presently do all this work for them

Lots of big-box stores have requirements for their products. For example, Lowe's only buys nuts and bolts that come in bags of 100-200 so they can fill their bolt bucket drawers. They are sometimes paid a lot of money by Duracell or Energizer (Depends on the exact store) to pretty much solely stock that brand of batteries. And finally, what store manager would waste 50% more space on "yet another battery display?"

Sanyo makes good money producing batteries for rebranding companies like Energizer. They wouldn't make as much selling direct to consumers in stores.
 

ElectronGuru

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People don't seem understand the technology. It seems that people can't wrap their heads around the concept that a more expensive cell is cheaper in the long run provided that a proper charger is used.

Price is half the problem, the other half is capacity. The more expensive 2000mah's are sitting right next to the freakishly unreliable 3100mah 'super cells'. Obviously the eneloops are a worse value, I mean who would pay more for less?

A retail kiosk is no place to teach the counterintuitive nature of battery capacity.
 
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shadowjk

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I'd theorize that people buy that supercell 3100, find them useless, and go back to alkaline.
 

H-Man

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Like I said, they don't understand the technology. I didn't know about eneloops until 12 months ago, I thought they were for lazy people willing to trade capacity for convince, oh how wrong was I. I bought a BC-700 and realized that the rayovac hybrids I bought a few years ago had the most capacity remaining, most of my nonLSD cells were useless. Off to target I went to get more duraloops.
Edit: Woah. Make that a year.
 

GoVegan

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Why don't the big outdoor stores sell Eneloops?

As flashaholics we love Eneloops but why don't any of the big outdoor stores sell them?
None of the big names (although REI used to), even though some of these stores sell Fenix, Nitecore and Foursevens flashlights even.

REI
Eastern Mountain Sports
****'s Sporting Goods
Campmore
Cabela's
Bass Pro Shops
Gander Mountain
Moosejaw
Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC)

Does anyone have any insight why?

Hey after a couple of years of lurking on this forum I finally created an account. :)
 

psychbeat

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Why don't the big outdoor stores sell Eneloops?

It would be nice huh...

Welcome to CPF :)

PS- been vegan for 21yrs & I'm still kickin!
 

TooManyGizmos

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Re: Why don't the big outdoor stores sell Eneloops?

~

Maybe cause when folks are outdoors and camping & such ....

They don't have a charger to re-vitalize them or don't wanna bother.

They also cost much more , so they'd rather spend that money on their other camping and outdoor gear.

That's my thought .

~
 
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