ASA Adjudication on MyCityDeal Ltd
MyCityDeal Ltd t/a
1 Liverpool Street
21 September 2011
Health and beauty
Number of complaints:
An e-mail from Groupon stated “Laser Teeth Whitening at Smart Smile for £89 (value £350)”.
The complainant, who received the e-mail on 14 June 2011 and believed the value of the teeth whitening treatment had been exaggerated, challenged whether the claim was misleading.
CAP Code (Edition 12)
Groupon said the deal was approved on 5 May 2011, before they implemented a price verification process. They said the value of the deal was based on the service offered by the partner at the time. They submitted a screen shot of their partner's website and a document they said was a receipt and believed this substantiated the claim.
The ASA welcomed Groupon's assurance that they had implemented a price verification process that, in future, required their partners to provide documentary proof of all prices quoted as original values. We noted the document they submitted stated “Thank you for your order: Smart-smile of Yorkshire Whitening Service ... £350”. However, it was not clear from the document whether a transaction had been made for £350 by a customer. Furthermore, we noted that while the document stated “Whitening Service”, the ad stated “Laser Teeth Whitening”. Because we had not seen evidence to demonstrate that laser teeth whitening at Smart Smile generally cost £350, we considered the savings claim had not been substantiated and therefore concluded that it was misleading.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation), 3.11 (Exaggeration) and 3.17 (Prices).
The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told Groupon not to make savings claims in future unless they held relevant evidence to substantiate them.