Shady Business. Active Endeavors Is Out of Business & Not Taking Care of Business

January 27, 2009 • Fashion


As we reported last week, it seems Active Endeavors is totally out of business…not just the stores, but online as well. Over the weekend I received a desperate email from Caroline in Sweden. She bought a dress from the site on December 23 on sale, but at that time not on final sale. Items were still returnable. The item didn't fit and she wanted to return it. 

Since she didn't use FedEx to return the item over two weeks ago (it would have cost as much as the dress to send back from Sweden) she received an email from informing her it would take 10-12 days from the day they received the return item for her to get her refund. "First of all, this doesn't feel right to me since I order from many stores in the US and they will refund me the same day they receive the return," she told me.

To date she has still not received her refund. She has I mailed AE to no avail and calls them constantly but nobody answers the phone. Caroline became suspicious (as did we) when she saw the 'blow-out' sale a few weeks ago. Now reality has set in that they will not refund her at all since they are closing down. She is justifiably very upset.

"Since I received the answer that they have the dress, I have emailed them about 20 times, so I guess they don't even read my emails any longer. I have also called them but I always get their answering machine so I have left a couple of messages. It is almost comic since they say the following on the site where you contact them:

We read every email.
That's right – every single one – because your questions and comments are important to us. So email us and let us know how we are doing.
We do our best to respond within 24 hours. Due to volume, we may be tardy, but rest assured we give you our undivided attention."

She even tried to email Drew Davis, the owner of Active Endeavors, but his emails have been bouncing back. This can't be good. What happens to all of the other customers who have AE store credits or return money due to them?

Personally I would not order a thing from them, no matter the price. This also raises the question, where can you turn when you feel you are being scammed? We are going to be seeing a lot more of this behavior from retailers this year I am afraid. Please, if a site looks like it's in trouble be careful and order with caution. Buyer beware. Once a business is out of business, you have little recourse.

Signs an e-commerce site is in trouble:

1. Discounts/sales that seem to good to be true

2. No new upcoming seasonal stock (still carrying only last season's styles)

3. Won't accept credits or gift cards

4. No returns accepted

Last bit of advice, if you have a store credit or gift card…spend it now, otherwise you will be left with a worthless piece of paper.

– Lauren Dimet Waters

Have you noticed any stores that look like they are on the verge of closing? Are you due a store credit you can't get back? Tell us about it.

Update: It's official! Active Endeavors is officially closed…for good.

We will keep you posted if Caroline actually receives her dress, again.

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One Response to Shady Business. Active Endeavors Is Out of Business & Not Taking Care of Business

  1. superk says:

    I was in a similar situation. Bought a dress mid-december, returned it for fit late december, they sat on it for three weeks and then returned the dress instead of refunding my money. They had not yet begun their liquidation and having ordered from them before I had no idea I was about to get screwed. I suppose I should be thankful they gave me anything back, but I am now wary of shopping anywhere online.

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