China Finds 22 More Fake Apple Stores

Apple in ChinaRegulatory authorities in China have found and identified 22 more fake Apple stores in the city of Kunming. Reuters reported that China’s Administration for Industry and Commerce in the Yunnan provincial capital announced that it had ordered the stores to stop using Apple’s logo, which they were doing without permission.

This is on top of the original four fake Apple Stores that went so far as to dress their employees up in T-shirts with the Apple logo inside stores that had been modeled almost exactly like Apple’s own retail Apple Store locations. Two of those stores were shut down in July.

An American blogger named BirdAbroad first brought those stores to light in a blog post that quickly gained international attention, as well as the ire of Apple. The Cupertino, CA company’s Chinese branch complained to the Administration for Industry and Commerce that these stores were unfairly competing with Apple by using its trademarked logo without permission.

Reuters noted that the regulatory bureau didn’t specify whether or not these shops were selling Apple goods bought on the gray market, good smuggled in like the iPads and iPhones recently nabbed in the Great Crossbow Zipline Caper bust of 2011, accessories for Apple goods like the similarly busted Apple Story in Queens, or if they were selling knockoff Apple products, of which there are plenty in China.

The Administration for Industry and Commerce is setting up a complaint hotline and plans to boost its own monitoring of this issue.