Home' The Channel Magazine : National Newsagent April 2015 Contents 6 National Newsagent - April 2015
ANF and MPA examine magazine supply
The ANF is working with the MPA on a pilot program as part of an
overhaul of the magazine supply system. The MPA is looking for
solutions that will work for all parties and also relieve the pressure
newsagents experience in managing magazines. Newsagents will be
updated as results come to hand.
Magazine industry to test oversupply
A report in Marketing Beta online says that the Australian Competition
and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has proposed to allow the
Association of Magazine Publishers of Australia (MPA) to run a pilot
program to combat longstanding problems with oversupply of
magazines to newsagents.
The pilot will run over three to six months with 20 newsagents,
involving publisher members of the MPA and distributors Gordon &
Gotch and Network Services.
The number of magazines supplied to newsagents would be limited by
including minimum sales efficiencies, ceasing to distribute titles after an
agreed number of consecutive nil sales, reducing requirements for full
copy returns, and limiting redistributions.
Newsagents, mostly small businesses, have long experienced
problems caused by the oversupply of magazines. Publishers tend to
oversupply to avoid losing display space to competitors’ titles, while
distributors oversupply because they are paid per copy.
Newsagents are often required to accept less popular magazines in
order to get the best-selling titles, according to the report.
Cut to penalty rates in SA
The Australian reported on 24 March that the country’s largest union
(the Shop, Distributive & Allied Employees’ Association) has agreed
to slash weekend penalty rates for the retail sector in a breakthrough
deal in South Australia that could affect up to 40,000 workers and be
replicated across the nation.
It reduces penalty rates for Sundays from a 100 per cent loading to 50
per cent, cuts public holiday rates from 150 per cent to 100 per cent,
and abolishes penalty rates on Saturdays and weekday evenings.
In exchange, workers will receive a higher base wage than under the
award, a guaranteed 3 per cent annual pay rise, and an unprecedented
right to refuse to work on Sundays and public holidays. It also gives
permanent workers the right to every second weekend off.
For a full-time shop assistant, the base rate of pay would jump by 8 per
cent from $703.90 a week to $760 a week.
The ANF’s IR specialist said that while it’s positive to see unions coming
to agreement with employers, the deal takes on one hand and gives
with the other. Penalty rates have been traded for higher rates during
the week. It is a solution that newsagents are able to do with their
own staff individually using the IFA template the ANF have previously
prepared for them. This deal highlights that this is a viable option to
make IFA’s with staff, if it suits both parties.
Lotteries and convenience
The Lottery Retailers Association (LRA) is deeply
concerned by the Tatts Group’s lack of transparency
over the recent trial of lottery ticket sales through
Coles Express outlets, and the possibility of mass
distribution through convenience channels, which
has the potential to undermine the livelihood of
In the 12 months to June last year, Tatts trialled the
sale of lottery products through the Coles Express
network and these outlets remain in operation today.
Tatts Managing Director, Mr Robbie Cooke, has
repeatedly reported the trial to be a success.
Tatts further claims the majority of sales through the
convenience channel are made outside of traditional
retail hours and therefore have little impact on the
traditional retail network.
Gary Carter, CEO of the LRA says that the LRA’s own
research suggests that sales figures from the Coles
Express trial stores in fact places them in the bottom
cluster of outlets on the Tatts rankings.
The LRA has gathered evidence indicating that many
of the convenience outlet sales are being taken from
the surrounding Tatts outlets, and are not primarily
being generated outside of traditional retail trading
hours as Tatts claim.
“The elephant in the room is the possibility that Tatts
will open these stores en masse, which may be a
precursor to further expansion into supermarkets,”
said Gary Carter CEO, for the LRA. “Sales estimates
for individual Coles Express outlets may appear low,
but this may be a very different story if the entire
Coles Express network of approximately 160 outlets
in Victoria were opened en masse and marketed
It would also appear Coles Express retailers are not
subject to equivalent obligations imposed by Tatts
as those imposed on traditional retailers thus placing
traditional retailers at a competitive disadvantage.
This is demonstrated in the limited training, shop-fit
and signage requirements imposed on Coles Express
stores compared to the onerous requirements
imposed on the traditional network.
“This can also devalue the brand and puts at risk the
high retail fit-out and service standards maintained by
the traditional network,” said Gary Carter.
The LRA is calling on Tatts to reconsider its strategy
and put its traditional retail network on no less
favourable terms than its convenience distribution
channels. The LRA intends to call on the Victorian
Government to follow the lead of other states and
protect these small businesses.
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