Green light for Supabarn acquisition

BY Australian Retailers Association
30 March 2016

SupabarnThe Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has decided not to oppose Coles’ proposed acquisition of five Supabarn supermarkets in NSW and the ACT. Coles is owned by Wesfarmers.

Coles originally proposed to acquire nine supermarkets from Supabarn. The parties restructured the transaction after the ACCC expressed concerns that the proposed acquisition would be likely to substantially lessen competition. Coles now proposes to acquire supermarkets in the Canberra Centre, Kaleen and Wanniassa in the ACT, and Five Dock and Sutherland in NSW.

“The ACCC’s review focused on two main issues. These were the effect of the acquisition upon competition between supermarket chains in the Canberra region and the effect upon each of the individual local markets in which the Supabarn stores operate,” ACCC Chairman, Rod Sims, said.

“We received vocal feedback from members of the public that Supabarn is competitive and has a differentiated offer from that of the other major supermarket chains. This was borne out by our own analysis.

“We were also concerned that the proposed acquisition, as originally structured, would have led to significant competitive harm in some of the local markets in the ACT and NSW. In these areas, Coles and Supabarn stores are located close together, and there is limited competition from other supermarkets.

“The deal has since been restructured in a way that removes the most problematic stores, as well as two other stores of lesser concern. It also retains Supabarn as a supermarket chain after the acquisition is completed with Supabarn being free to compete under the Supabarn name,” Mr Sims said.

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Australian Retailers Association

Founded in 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is Australia’s largest retail association representing Australia’s $310 billion sector, which employs more than 1.2 million people. As the retail industry’s peak representative body, the ARA works to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 7,500 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. For more information, visit www.retail.org.au or call 1300 368 041.

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