ASA Adjudication on Prestons of Bolton
Prestons of Bolton
102-104 Chester Gate
12 September 2012
Number of complaints:
A TV ad for a diamond wedding and engagement rings retailer broadcast in June 2012 featured various diamond rings. On-screen text stated "Diamond rings from only £795".
The complainant challenged whether the claim was misleading, because they did not believe that any of the featured rings were available for £795.
Prestons of Bolton said the ad showed a selection of diamond rings and claimed that they sold diamond rings from £795. They said the rings shown on screen were not priced and the ring which featured a solitaire modern brilliant cut diamond was available from £795. They submitted an e-mail from their Store Manager which stated that they stocked a diamond ring that was the same style as one of the rings in the advert and which retailed at £775. A computer number was also provided. They also submitted three screenshots from their database system, one of which stated "BRILL CUT SINGLE STONE" and a stock number, which was the same as the computer number provided in the e-mail. The other screenshots demonstrated that one item with the same stock number was purchased on 14 February 2012 and another on 13 April 2012 and that the customer who purchased the item in February paid £770.
Clearcast said the advertiser confirmed in writing that one of the featured diamond rings was available from £795.
The ASA considered it was reasonable for viewers to expect one or more of the featured diamond rings to be available at the quoted price. While the e-mail stated that a diamond ring, the same style as one shown in the ad, retailed at £775 it did not provide objective evidence that related to the availability of the featured diamond rings at the advertised price. The screenshots indicated that a product described as "BRILL CUT SINGLE STONE" had been sold in February and April 2012. However, we had not received any evidence to demonstrate that this product related to one of the diamond rings featured in the ad and that, at the time the ad was broadcast, it was available for £795. Because we had not received any objective evidence to demonstrate that any of the featured diamond rings were available for £795, the claim had not been substantiated and was misleading.
The ad breached BCAP Code rules 3.1 (Misleading advertising), 3.9 (Substantiation) and 3.18 and 3.24 (Prices).
The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told Prestons of Bolton not to make price statements unless they related to the product or products depicted in the ad.