Currys was left feeling the heat after Argos reported the electronics retailer to the Advertising Standards Authority about what it claimed was a misleading national press campaign failed to deliver.
The advert in question showed a LCD TV with the promotional strap "only £199". The rest of the advert stated that it was a 15-inch LCD TV with an in built DVD player and was tagged with the statement "Hurry – while stocks last!"
Rival retailer Argos decided to put the offer to the test ringing around 25 Currys stores across the nation and found that 22 had no stock at all.
It referred the issue to the ASA saying that in addition to the laptop in question being out of stock in the majority of stores it contacted, the laptop was listed as in stock on Currys’ home delivery line and website, however, it was listed at the more expensive price of £259 and was bundled with a speaker system.
Currys responded to Argos and the ASA saying that the offer was held between the 1st and 4th of June 2006 and received far higher demand than was expected. Argos however refuted this claim arguing that if they had stock online then it should have been diverted to the stores otherwise its "while stocks last" claim would have been false.
The ASA however agreed with Currys and no action has been taken.