On September 1st, 2017 at 10:08PM (Montreal time), two days after the launch of the Type 77 presale campaign (where 50% of the Type 77 timepieces available had already been pre-ordered), Division Furtive was notified by its payment processor, Shopify, that the proceeds of the campaign were going to be frozen for 90 days because of a “chargeback risk”. The email from Shopify included the threat that the situation would continue if a single chargeback was to occur during that period. You can read this email here.
Firstly, Division Furtive was immediately worried for its collectors. Having collectors’ money in limbo for 3 months can only create two things: fear and uncertainty. Which, ironically, is a perfect scenario to see chargeback starting to pop-up. A lot of the future Type 77 collectors are returning collectors from the Type 40 and Type 50 presale campaigns and are among the world’s most faithful and patient people (simply read the feedback from the Type 40 and Type 50 Kickstarter campaigns to see that for yourself) but they did not sign up for this and it is unfair to impose this situation on them.
Secondly, as you can imagine, being imposed a three months delay out of nowhere from a minor actor in the project has devastating consequences on the project planning. This single action from Shopify has ruined more than a year of development and planning for this launch. What strikes the most is the unpredictable nature of Shopify’s decision. In addition to being a fellow Canadian company, Shopify had been chosen for its openness toward pre-orders. The rules instructed by the Shopify Guru in this post on Shopify ecommerce university had been followed.
Finally, Division Furtive doesn’t deal with companies that impose fear and uncertainty on its customers. Division Furtive has decided to put the money back where it belongs, that is in collectors’ pockets, not Shopify’s. At least by doing this, Shopify won’t be making 3-month worth of interest on the money of the presale campaign they decided to freeze out of nowhere. If you had placed a pre-order, you should already have received an email about the refund. Allow a few days for the refund to appear on your credit card. Please contact Division Furtive if you have questions.
Because the momentum built and the chosen launch window for this campaign is now lost, the future of Division Furtive is uncertain and the Type 77 production is now on hold. Feel free to remain subscribed to the Division Furtive mailing list if you are interested in the upcoming developments.