Why did Thomas Dux really fail?
February 10, 2016

There is a whole lot of discussion around the progressive closure of Thomas Dux stores by owner Woolworths, and the assumption that it will be closed down if a trade sale does not evolve.   Maybe there is a plan to save it, but I cannot see it, and having bought some rubbish grapes at an inflated price in the Lane Cove store during the week, I do not know what it might be.   Not a lot of the discussion actually addresses the strategic failure that is the foundation of the commercial failure, just... ...Read more »

Woolworths board shake-up with greater diversification
February 8, 2016

Jetstar CEO Jayne Hrdlicka is resigning from the board of Woolworths after spending over five years in the role.   She will be replaced with two new appointments, both non-executive director appointments, Holly Kramer from the Nine Entertainment Corporation and Siobhan McKenna from the Ten Network.   Woolworths Chairman Gordon Cairns said Hrdlicka has decided that the demands of the Woolworths Board at this time are too significant to balance with her commitments as the Jetstar Group CEO... ...Read more »

Woolworths ordered to pay over $3 million for misleading consumers
February 8, 2016

The Australian Federal Court last Friday ordered Woolworths to pay AUD$3.057 million for misleading consumers over product safety issues with private label products sold in its supermarkets, Big W and Masters stores over a three year period.   The Court declared that Woolworths engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct and in some cases had made false or misleading representations about the safety of five of its house brand products – a deep fryer, drain cleaner, safety matches, a padded... ...Read more »

Concerns supermarkets maybe using supplier product details to own benefit
January 27, 2016

A former executive at Kellogg’s Australia has claimed in an article appearing in Fairfax’s Sydney Morning Herald and The Age newspapers that the supermarket majors Woolworths and Coles could be using supplier information to help develop private label products.   Speaking to Fairfax, Jean-Yves Heude, who worked at Kellogg’s for over 10 years said the supermarkets ask for sensitive information from suppliers to help justify pricing. Heude is however concerned this type of information could... ...Read more »

Supermarkets at different ends of the screwdriver: Woolworths to sell Masters, Wesfarmers enters UK hardware market
January 18, 2016

Woolworths has made a major announcement confirming its plan to sell or close its failed Masters hardware chain.   By a strange twist of fate, the announcement has come at the same time as its competitor Wesfarmers has purchased UK-based hardware network Homebase. Wesfarmers is the parent company of Coles supermarkets and Bunnings Warehouse, which was the successful hardware business operation that Woolworths set out to emulate and compete with when it established Masters in 2011.   Lowe’s... ...Read more »

NZ government objects to Australia’s new country of origin food labels
January 18, 2016

New Zealand’s Ministry of Primary Industries has said it is concerned about the cost it will take for its nation’s food producers to comply with Australia’s new proposed country of origin labelling laws.   Announced in July 2015, the proposed laws will require food sold in Australia to include a labelling statement identifying where the food comes from.   Supporter of the labelling reforms, Australian Federal Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Barnaby Joyce has however said... ...Read more »

Major Australian supermarkets Thai Union supplier shrimp linked to human rights abuses
December 16, 2015

Australian supermarkets giants have confirmed they source seafood from a company implicated in the usage of indentured slave labourers for prawn peeling.   Coles, Woolworths and Aldi supermarkets have each confirmed that they have sourced seafood from major seafood supplier Thai Union. A report by Associated Press lead to Thai Union being accused of slave-like conditions at prawn peeling factories, including bonded and child labour.   While rival supermarket group IGA said they do not use... ...Read more »

Woolworths learns from Qantas loyalty rewards debacle
December 16, 2015

Woolworths and Qantas released the details of a fresh loyalty partnership on Tuesday 15 December 2015, following social media backlash from Woolworths customers.   In October 2015, Woolworths had announced the launch of a new rewards system, which gives customers “Woolworths Dollars” for the purchase of selected ‘orange ticket’ items.   The scheme revised yesterday now allows these points to be converted to Qantas points at a rate of 870 points for every 10 Woolworths Dollars earned.   This... ...Read more »

ACCC takes action against Woolworths over alleged unconscionable conduct towards suppliers
December 14, 2015

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has initiated proceedings in the Federal Court against Woolworths alleging unconscionable conduct in dealing with a large number of its suppliers.   The ACCC is alleging that the supermarket acted in contravention to Australian Consumer Law in December 2014 when its senior management developed a strategy aimed at reducing its half year gross profit shortfall by 31 December 2014.   To do this the ACCC is alleging that Woolworths’... ...Read more »

ACCC happy with Woolworths and Aldi’s efforts to resolve Food and Grocery Code concerns
December 9, 2015

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) says it welcomes the actions of Woolworths and Aldi to resolve concerns regarding implementation of the Food and Grocery Code (the Grocery Code).   In September 2015 the ACCC issued a public notification stating that both Woolworths and Aldi were being investigated for alleged breaches of the Food and Grocery Code. At the time, the ACCC said that both supermarkets were presenting Grocery Supply Agreements (GSAs) to suppliers in a way... ...Read more »

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