According to our source, one JB Hi-Fi employee has put the whole company in the middle of a PS5 scam bound to anger gamers.
If you are one of the countless gamers desperately hunting a PlayStation 5 because you weren’t lucky enough to snag a pre-order at launch, then gee whiz the last six months have probably been a bit rough.
Thanks to the unfortunate one-two punch of a global pandemic and global chip shortage, getting your hands on the next-generation of video game systems has been nothing short of a minor miracle. Whenever retailers are actually fortunate enough to score new stock, it’s sold out in literal seconds. Madness.
Which is what makes what we’re about to tell you especially shitty. An anonymous source has stepped forward to inform us that a Sydney-based JB Hi-Fi employee has struck a deal with a friend to secure multiple PS5 units before they are made available to the public on the shop floor.
It’s a big call, and the actual logistics of the scheme can quickly become confusing, so allow us to break down this absolutely disappointing process.
From the details we’ve been provided, we believe that the JB Hi-Fi employee in question agreed to grab fresh PS5 consoles that were delivered to the store’s warehouse, and sneakily put them aside. This in turn prevented everyday gamers from being able to purchase these systems without any idea they were even available in the first place.
The employee allegedly then helped their friend to purchase this treasure trove of systems at their regular retail price (that’s about $749 for the disc-based version), who then took a trip straight to Facebook Marketplace and started selling them at an absolute premium of $1300 a pop. For anybody not following along with a calculator – that’s a whopping $550 profit per console.
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According to our source, at one point the scalper had 10 or more PS5s in their possession ready to offload, stating that they had six on sale at the same time.
“I asked [the scalper] how they had so many PlayStations and at first they told me they just got a few as gifts,” our source claims. However, when I continued to prod them they eventually admitted they had an “inside man” at JB Hi Fi who hooked them up.”
This story is supported up by the below receipt which was provided to our source upon purchasing the system from the scalper in the spotlight. It goes without saying that we’ve blacked out the store location.
A quick visit to Facebook Marketplace will admittedly showcase that this is not an isolated occurrence. There is an absolute bevy of like-minded scalpers trying their best to make a quick buck, but the connection to one of the country’s largest retail chains is particularly upsetting.
While we certainly don’t have all the answers, the major question here is how the JB employee is gaining access to the systems in the first place, when many would likely be tied up in pre-orders.
A possible explanation could (and we must stress that this is speculation) be tied to news we reported back in February. At the time JB Hi-Fi stores across the country began receiving small shipments of consoles that were being allocated to customers via a physical list. Many stores were taking orders either in-person or over the phone, making it much easier to squirrel away stock right under people’s noses.
Naturally, we reached out to JB Hi-Fi about the whole matter, but they chose not to comment.
In the meantime, although we understand the temptation to finally land yourself a PS5 by any means necessary, just be careful about who you buy it from and where. Retailers are gradually receiving more and more stock each month, meaning that scoring a new console will definitely get easier. And if you’re really keen, check out this real-time tracker that an absolute legend put together.
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