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ACCC not thrilled by Woolies takeover of the Hawker IGA

By 7 December 2012 10

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has raised its concerns over Woolies taking over the Hawker shops:

The ACCC’s preliminary view is that the proposed acquisition may result in a substantial lessening of competition in the local supermarket market.

The ACCC considers that the proposed acquisition would remove the unique offering of the Hawker Supa IGA from the local market. In particular, the Hawker Supa IGA is the only full-line independent supermarket in the local market, and is the only Supa IGA in north Canberra.

“Market inquiries have indicated that the Hawker Supa IGA differentiates its offerings from its competitors in terms of price, product range and service. This differentiation represents a competitive response to the offer of rival supermarkets, providing additional choice to consumers,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

The proposed acquisition would replace this differentiated offering with a standardised Woolworths offer, which may lead to a significant reduction in choice for consumers.

The ACCC also considers that this competition is unlikely to be re-introduced into the local market because of high barriers to entry in the local market, including regulatory limits on development and expansion of supermarket sites.

That last par is interesting as those regulatory limits are supposed to be improving competition.

You’ve got until 7 February to share your views with the competition watchdog.

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10 Responses to
ACCC not thrilled by Woolies takeover of the Hawker IGA
Brindabella 2:54 pm
07 Dec 12
#1

I shop there all the time. Pity. This is the last of the great independents. Great selection of weird and wonderful European goods.

NoImRight 3:24 pm
07 Dec 12
#2

Brindabella said :

I shop there all the time. Pity. This is the last of the great independents. Great selection of weird and wonderful European goods.

There are others. Well at least one anyway. Bottom of Tuggers. Manages to compete in the same building as Wololworths and Coles.

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 6:17 pm
07 Dec 12
#3

It sucks that woollies are the ones buying it. Worst of the worst really. But who is anybody to say who you can and cannot sell your business to?

Watson 7:34 pm
07 Dec 12
#4

I only go there very occasionally but that must be one of the – if not the – best IGAs in Canberra. They slice the deli meat when you order! Like in Europe…

I would be majorly peed off if the closest supermarket near my house was a Woolies. IGA offers way better service, their prices are ok and they often sell stuff that you cannot find anywhere else.

Henry82 12:51 am
08 Dec 12
#5

So basically they’re ‘concerned’ but won’t do anything about it. Waste of time

Ben_Dover 12:15 pm
08 Dec 12
#6

I use(d) Hawker IGA regularly, as it was a small, but comprehensive, alternative to WoolCo. If it changes to another bland Wollies, then why bother using it when there is a larger and better Coles in Jammo? (Apart from being able to grab a poke of chips from Hawker chippy at the same time.)

gazket 1:00 pm
08 Dec 12
#7

Henry82 said :

So basically they’re ‘concerned’ but won’t do anything about it. Waste of time

we all know the ACCC is part of many government claytons dept.

Tetranitrate 4:30 pm
08 Dec 12
#8

NoImRight said :

There are others. Well at least one anyway. Bottom of Tuggers. Manages to compete in the same building as Wololworths and Coles.

Jardin Fresh Life is truly amazing though – unlike the most of the IGA’s it actually manages to compete on price very effectively with Coles and Woollies. Fruit + veg, meat, yogurt, bread and the like are regularly much cheaper there than Woolies/Coles. it’s awesome and I shop there whenever I can.

Dacquiri 12:03 am
09 Dec 12
#9

The prospect of the IGA turning into a Woolworth’s is bad enough, but the other thing that’s likely to happen with such a takeover is a move to expand the premises and build on the existing car park — which would mean underground or undercroft parking and the end of the quick, easy and convenient parking that is such a draw-card for the Hawker shops. How long will ACT Govt hold out before they sell the car parks???

JC 10:21 pm
10 Dec 12
#10

Even before this proposed takeover the future of the carpark has been under a question mark. So don’t think Wollies taking over will change the situation.

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