Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Oldtony of the Gold Coast

I was reading an article this evening on political debate and found at the end of it a rather insightful question which I'd like to answer (should oldtony ever find this)

Oldtony of Gold Coast Posted at 6:32 AM Today

Is competition policy the big idea that niether party want to talk about? The two elephants in the room that have not been mentioned by either side are the two Ws, Woolies and Wesfarmers. Does any other country in the world have a market so dominated by two retail giants. Fresh food, groceries, petrol, liquor, gaming, books, clothing, hardware, household goods and increasingly pharmacy and optical. Not only do they have the power to kill off or purchase retail sales competition, they also have the power to manipulate supply and production with their purchasing power. Ask any farmer or small manufacturer.

Comment 4 of 49

The answer is yes, at least Finland where the S and K chains have almost entirely dominated the market. What remains is only a couple of small grocers who like IGA are combining to make some sort of last stand.

Kiss goodbye to market variation and embrace uniformity. Perhaps its cheaper, but I can't say that food (or even freshness) is better there than here. As Tony points out, the market barely benefits, the farmers and producers surely don't. Anyone recall the deregulation of milk?

This also brings me to notice that more and more poignant comments are coming from people who hail from the Gold Coast. Perhaps this means that one of the effects of all the retirement here on the Gold Coast has been we get some thoughtful and experienced elders among the community (not just the kokheads who do burnouts and drag racing in the streets in their hotted up V8's and other stuff).

Food for thought there ... wonder how we can capitalize on this?

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