Campaigning to curb supermarket power

2008

 

Supermarkets' emergency plans to keep shelves full

The Observer, 14th December 2008

Fears that scores of supermarket suppliers will go bust next year have led the country's major chains to draw up emergency plans to replace them, The Observer can reveal...read more...

 Tesco to be world's second-biggest retailer

Fructidor.com, 11th December 2008

Tesco will become the world's second-biggest retailer in the next four years, according to a new study out today...read more...

 Retailers accused of ignoring Bangladeshi workers' plight

The Guardian, Friday December 5 2008

Workers producing clothes in Bangladesh for some of the UK's biggest retailers are being forced to work up to 80 hours a week for as little as 7p an hour, according to a report published today...read more...

 Morrisons plans to buy 35 stores from the Co-op

The Guardian, Thursday December 4 2008

The supermarket chain Morrisons is expected to unveil plans today to buy some 35 shops from the Co-op. The stores were put on the market as a result of the Co-op's planned takeover of the Somerfield chain...read more...

 High street shake-out

New Statesman, 4th December 2008

Woolworths has gone, many other famous stores will disappear, but a new age of shopping will emerge from the wreckage...read more...

 ASDA front runner to buy Woolworths

AccountancyAge.com, 2nd December 2008

The Asda supermarket chain, owned by the world's biggest retailer, Wal-Mart in the US, is said to be the front runner to bid for the troubled high street retailer Woolworths. Speaking on Skynews' Jeff Randall Live, Asda chief Andy Bond said he was seeking to expand the company but stopped short of confirming the reports...read more...

 Tesco posts worst figures in 16 years

The Observer, 30th November 2008

Tesco will reveal its worst sales performance since the early 1990s recession this week as concern mounts that more high-street retailers are facing financial collapse...read more...

 Thai journalist settles Tesco libel case

The Guardian, Friday November 28 2008

A Thai business columnist sued for libel damages of £1.9m by Tesco Lotus has reached an agreement with the supermarket chain to end the suit...read more...

 Tesco bank chief Higgins raids crisis-hit rivals to fill top positions

Scotland on Sunday, 16th November 2008

Benny Higgins, the new chief executive of Tesco Personal Finance, has poached senior names from crisis-hit Royal Bank of Scotland and HBOS, his former employers, with more expected to follow...read more...

 Farmers accuse supermarkets of harsh tactics in price war

The Guardian,  14th November 2008

The big supermarkets are treating suppliers "harshly" and "beating up" farmers and growers as they compete to offer the lowest prices, the National Farmers' Union has warned...read more...

 Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy pleads for urgent government help

The Times, 12th November 2008

Sir Terry Leahy, Tesco's chief executive, urged the Government yesterday to cut business rates, reduce red tape and secure an urgent reduction in wholesale energy costs to help British businesses to survive the economic downturn...read more...

 How Asda takes sting out of the crunchThe Observer, 16th November 2008

Unusually for a chief financial officer, Asda's Judith McKenna never really gets to talk numbers. She can't: ever since the supermarket group was bought by Wal-Mart in 1999, she has been kept on a tight leash by the US conglomerate's strict reporting regime. However, the reins have been loosened this year, with Wal-Mart agreeing to reveal snippets to the British press...read more... Meltdown puts the brakes on Tesco's US dream

The Times, 12th November 2008

One of Tesco's most senior executives has said that the meltdown in the American economy will force the supermarket giant to slow the rollout of its fledgling Fresh & Easy business on the West Coast of America...read more... 

 Tesco: competition finding 'plainly flawed'

The Times, 11th November 2008

Regulations intended to prevent supermarkets from opening new stores in areas where they already have a large market share are “plainly flawed” and should be repealed, Tesco said today...read more...

 Tesco considers putting its 'more extreme' projects on hold

Construction News, 11th November 2008

Supermarket giant Tesco is "keeping an eagle eye on costs" and may put some of its "more extreme" developments on hold in light of the economic downturn, its chief executive has admitted...read more...

 Competition Commission test could be delayed until 2010 after Tesco appeal

The Independent, 7th November 2008

Tesco's decision to appeal against the grocery inquiry's crucial competition test next week could delay its implementation until 2010 at the earliest...read more...

 Not everyone benefits from Tesco’s merry Christmas

The Financial Times, 30th October 2008

It’s the early Christmas card no supplier wants to receive: Season’s Greetings from Tesco – from December 1, we’ll be paying you a month later than usual...read more...

 Tesco to change payment terms for suppliers

Financial Times, 24th October 2008

Tesco is asking all its non-food suppliers to wait an extra 30 days for payment of goods, as Britain’s biggest retailer looks for ways to free up millions of pounds as it enters the all-important Christmas trading season...read more...

 Suppliers accuse Tesco of making ‘aggressive’ demandsSunday ~Times, 19th October 2008

Tesco is locked in a battle with suppliers this weekend after allegedly demanding one-off cash payments and keener terms to help fund its price war with rival Asda and discount supermarkets Lidl and Aldi...read more... UK: Retail probe “finds evidence of price sharing”

Just-food.com, 25th September 2008

An investigation conducted by the UK's Office of Fair Trading has reportedly uncovered evidence of price sharing between the country's largest supermarkets and consumer goods companies...read more...

 Wal-Mart small stores prompt big battle with TescoRetail Bulletin, 25th September 2008

An interesting piece of news earlier this month was that Wal-Mart intends to open one of the first of its small format stores a mere couple of miles down the road from a Fresh & Easy store of Tesco...read more... Tesco store set for fresh OFT probe

Daily Telegraph, 20th September 2008

The Office of Fair Trading is to launch an investigation after Tesco used a local retailer to "front" a planning application for a massive supermarket development in Devon...read more...
 

 Tesco-an apology from the Guardian

The Guardian, 16th September 2008

Tesco has accepted a formal offer of apology by the Guardian in relation to the reports "Tesco's £1bn tax avoiding plan - move to the Cayman Islands" and "Every little bit helps: tax free pot of gold at end of Tesco's rainbow" (pages 1 and 27, February 27) and a related editorial and podcast...read more...

 Supermarkets “discount unhealthy foods”

Just-food.com, 1st September 2008

A UK consumer group has accused the country's retailers of promoting unhealthy eating habits by offering increasing numbers of discounts on sugary and fatty foods...read more...

 Ad watchdog raps Tesco price claims

Just-food.com, 20th August 2008

Tesco has faced criticism from the UK's advertising standards watchdog for "misleading" consumers over adverts that compared prices at the retailer with those at rivals Asda and Morrisons...read more...

 Asda and Tesco change brand identity of clothing ranges

Brand Republic, 19th August 2008

The UK's two biggest supermarkets are investing in the visual identities of their clothing ranges as they battle for the position of number-one UK clothing retailer...read more...

 Tesco seeks £500m from sale of stores

Sunday Telegraph, 17th August 2008

Tesco is in talks to sell up to a dozen of its largest stores in a move that could raise up to £500m...read more...

 Tesco pulled into bribery case over Turkey site

Financial Times, 15th August 2008

Tesco has become embroiled in a Turkish political scandal after the development of its largest store in the country was caught up in bribery allegations...read more...

 INDIA: Tesco announces India venture

Just Food.com, 12th August 2008

Retail giant Tesco has today (12 August) announced its intention to develop a wholesale cash-and-carry business in India...read more...

 Tesco and Sainsbury's head for High Court over co-owned site

Daily Telegraph, 11th August 2008

Tesco and J Sainsbury, the rival retailers, are heading for a High Court battle over plans to build a large supermarket in the West Midlands...read more...

 Tesco tax avoidance schemes can form part of libel case, judge rules The Guardian, 30th July 2008

Details of elaborate offshore corporation tax avoidance schemes operated by Tesco were yesterday allowed to be introduced into evidence in a libel case the supermarket chain is bringing against the Guardian...read more...

 

Tesco rivals to get say on stores test

The Observer, August 3 2008

Rival supermarket chains Asda and Waitrose could derail Tesco's attempt to get a new competition test thrown out in court. The rule is one of the key changes proposed by the Competition Commission after a two-year inquiry into the grocery sector but Tesco, headed by Sir Terry Leahy, has sought a judicial review to prevent its introduction...read more...

 Tesco planning big financial push BBC.co.uk, 28th July 2008
 
Tesco is to make an aggressive push into the financial services market, seeking to transform itself into a fully-fledged retail bank... read more... 
  Tesco to freshen up its US stores venture

Daily Telegraph, 28th July 2008

Tesco's US retailing venture looks set to bow to criticism of the at-times austere design of its stores and incorporate local and community design features for the first time...read more...

 Tesco throws its weight behind supermarket tsar

Independent on Sunday, 20th July 2008

Government urged to introduce legislation to create ombudsman if the UK's top 10 grocers refuse voluntarily to accept a regulator. Tesco, the country's biggest supermarket, will back calls for legislation to create a supermarkets tsar, should the big 10 grocers fail to accept such authority voluntarily...read more...

 Cambridgeshire eco-town scrapped after Wellcome Trust refuses to sell the land

Daily Telegraph, 17th July 2008

Plans for an eco-town near Cambridge have been shelved after the world's largest medical research charity refused to sell land to developers... read more... 
 

 Co-op poised to tie up £1.6bn buyout of Somerfield stores

The Observer, July 13, 2008

The Co-op is expected to complete the £1.6bn takeover of Somerfield this week, after drawn-out sale talks...read more...

 Tesco’s plot to counter Aldi effect

The Sunday Times, 14th July 2008

TESCO is developing a new range of own-brand products to tackle the so-called Aldi effect which has seen thousands of hard-pressed families defect to the German discounter... read more... 

 Out of town supermarkets that harm High Streets to be blockedThe Telegraph, 10th July 2008

New out-of-town supermarkets and vast shopping malls will be blocked in future if they are judged to pose a risk to the survival of local stores...read more... Blears: I'll change rules on planning to protect town centresEvening Standard, 7th July 2008

Sweeping curbs on out-of-town supermarkets are to be introduced in a bid to protect smaller shops, Communities Secretary Hazel Blears announced today...read more... Tesco launches appeal over competition test

Daily Telegraph, 1st July 2008

Tesco has launched an unprecedented appeal following the Competition Commission's two-year investigation into the UK grocery sector...read more...

 Are we falling out of love with Tesco?

The Observer, 29th June 2008

It has been an unprecedented British success story with record profits and global expansion. So why is Tesco under increasing fire over the way it does business? Last week Barack Obama and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall were the latest to join the chorus of protest. David Smith and Zoe Wood asks why the store has become the focus for such fierce criticism...read more...

 Supermarkets sweep to the north

BBC.co.uk, 29th June 2008

Major retail chains are locked in a supermarkets sweep to the Highlands and Islands. Applications for sites across the region are at various stages in the planning process...read more...

 Tesco 'slave labour' rowEvening Standard, 26th June 2008

Tesco is accused today of exploiting workers who are paid an average 16p an hour...read more... Obama urges Tesco to meet union

The Guardian, 26th June 26 2008

The Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama has written to Tesco's chief executive, Sir Terry Leahy, to urge the company to start talks with a US trade union over workers' rights at its new California-based grocery business...read more...

 Exposed: Tesco poses as 'local' trader

Sunday Telegraph, 22nd June 2008

Tesco has been accused of using underhand tactics after it used a local retailer to "front" a planning application for a massive supermarket development...read more...

 Tesco: 'This is a serious AGM - not a circus'

Mail on Sunday, 22nd June 2008

Tesco's annual general meetings have long been colourful affairs. The supermarket giant has plenty of enemies who always turn out in force to make their views known on every subject from animal rights to planning blight... read more...

 The future of food is not on the farmThe Observer, 22nd June 2008

I have seen the future of food in Britain and it ain't pretty. When it's finished, Thanet Earth will be the largest greenhouse development ever seen in Britain, covering an area equivalent to 80 football pitches. So far, only one of the eight metre-high glass cathedrals is up over the dusty Kent soil. Not that the quality of the earth here is relevant. The crops will be planted in glorified window boxes hanging from the ceiling, allowing the produce - tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers - to dangle at waist height for ease of picking. When in full production, Thanet Earth will be able to supply 15 per cent of this country's salad vegetable needs...read more... 'Tescopoly' engulfs controversial ecotowns

The Telegraph, 21st June 2008

A third of the the Government's planned ecotowns are being backed by developers with links to supermarkets...read more...

 

 3,000 greengrocers lost in last decade

Daily Telegraph, 9th June 2008

British high streets have lost nearly 3,000 greengrocers over the last decade, new figures have shown, highlighting the dramatic decline of traditional shops and forcing customers to pay more for their fruit and vegetables...read more... 
 
 

 Wal-Mart: from zero to hero?

The Independent. 6th June 2008

For years, Wal-Mart was attacked for exploiting its staff and suppliers. But now the world's biggest retailer has stopped fighting its critics and started listening...read more...

 Tesco to take Dobbies private within month

The Scotsman, 5th June 2008

Supermarket giant Tesco has today confirmed that it will take Dobbies Garden Centre private within the next month... read more...

 American unions bring Tesco fight to UK

The Guardian, Thursday June 5 2008

Tesco was yesterday accused of "arrogance" and "hypocrisy" for refusing to recognise shopworker unions in the United States, where it has built a chain of 60 supermarkets and has plans to open hundreds more...read more...

 Tesco: new claims of tax avoidance

The Guardian, May 31 2008

Tesco, the retail and property giant, is facing new allegations of seeking to avoid corporation tax on millions of pounds of profits through an offshore scheme...read more...

 Superstore banana price war attacked by aid charities

The Observer, May 25 2008

A supermarket banana price war has broken out and been widely condemned by overseas aid charities...read more...

 Tesco wins Dobbies as Sir Tom caves in

The Times, 21st May 2008
 
Sir Tom Hunter, Scotland's richest entrepreneur, has finally backed down in his battle with Tesco over Dobbies Garden Centres by agreeing to sell his 29.2 per cent stake in the group to the supermarket chain for £12 a share...read more...

 Tesco pays nearly £1bn for Korean stores

Financial Times, May 14 2008

Tesco is breaking its decade-long pursuit of overseas organic growth, with a record cash purchase of a chain of hypermarkets in South Korea...read more...

 Hunter moves to stop Tesco tightening its grip on Dobbies

The Independent, 10 May 2008 

Sir Tom Hunter, Scotland's richest man, has stoked his feud with Tesco after launching legal action to block the supermarket chain from tightening its hold on Dobbies Garden Centre...read more...

 Asda backs down over proposed code of conduct

The Guardian, Monday May 5 2008

Asda has changed its mind about overseas suppliers being included in a new code of conduct. Asda has dropped its opposition to overseas suppliers being included in a new code of conduct designed to protect them against unfair terms imposed by UK supermarket buyers...read more...

 The 16 weeks of questions and answers that led to a libel writ

The Guardian, Saturday May 3 2008

Tesco's legal action against the Guardian is unusual in that it claims not simply that the paper had damaged the company's reputation by alleging that it would seek to avoid paying large sums in tax, but also that the reporters and editor had "an utter disregard for the truth or falsity" of the claims...read more...

 Tax and transparency

The Guardian, Saturday May 3 2008

The amount of tax public companies should pay is - in theory at least - decided by parliament. Another piece of theory dictates that there should be a certain amount of transparency about who pays what and whether they play by the spirit as well as the rules intended by parliament. Debate and scrutiny are important. The problem is that both are becoming impossibly difficult...read more...

 New supermarket watchdog faces funding problems

The Times, 29th April 2008

The new retail ombudsman, dubbed Offshop and to be launched tomorrow, looks set to be derailed by a lack of cash. The Competition Commission will tomorrow press ahead with a plan to create a specialist ombudsman to settle disputes between supermarkets and suppliers as it reports the findings of a two-year investigation into the grocery market...read more...

 Competition Commission tells supermarkets to give rivals room

The Times, 1st May 2008

The Competition Commission is forcing Britain's biggest supermarkets to free up more than 60 sites for rivals after announcing the findings of a two-year investigation into the £120 billion grocery market...read more...

 OFT raids supermarkets in new price-fixing inquiry

The Guardian, Monday April 28 2008 

 Britain's biggest supermarkets are being investigated in another alleged price-fixing scam after the Office of Fair Trading swooped on the headquarters of retailers including Tesco and Asda last week...read more...

 Tesco to sell property website to SpicerhaartThe Times, 30th April 2008

Sale at a 'competitive price' comes six months after Tesco pulled all individual property listings from its website. Tesco is poised to sell its property website to one of the country's largest estate agency owners, less than a year after its launch...read more... OFT in new supermarket crackdown

 bbc.co.uk, 28th April 2008

Britain's four biggest supermarkets are under investigation by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) for fixing prices of health, beauty and grocery products...read more...
 

 

 Authors take on Tesco ‘tyrants’ over Thai legal action

The Times, 29th April 2008

A group of Britain’s leading authors has accused Tesco of using “deeply chilling” tactics to silence its critics...read more...

 Watchdog hoping big retailers buy plans

Sunday Telegraph, 26th April 2008

The Competition Commission will this week spark anger among UK supermarket bosses by demanding that they foot much of the bill for the controversial industry ombudsman it is planning...read more...

 

 

 OFT accuses tobacco firms and retailers of cigarette price-fixing

The Guardian, 25th April 2008

The Office of Fair Trading has accused tobacco manufacturers and retailers, including the UK's biggest supermarkets, of acting unlawfully over the price of tobacco products...read more...

 

 OFT pays Morrisons £100,000 over false price-fixing allegations

The Guardina, 23rd April 2008

The Office Of Fair Trading is paying £100,000 in damages to Wm Morrison after making a series of false accusations against the supermarket group as part of its investigation into price-fixing in the dairy industry...read more...

 

 UK: Tesco "breadth" drives profit growth

just-food.com, 15th April 2008

Tesco has this morning (14 April) booked a 12% rise in annual profits with the UK retailer's international markets now accounting for half the company's earnings...read more...

 UK: Tesco plans c-store expansion

just-food.com, 14th April 2008

Tesco is planning to open 150 convenience stores in the UK over the next 12 months...read more...

 Tesco HQ jobs at risk

Mail on Sunday, 20 April 2008

Tesco is conducting a massive head office review that could result in hundreds of jobs being axed...read more...

 Tesco 'secret bidder' behind eco-town project

Daily Telegraph, 7th April 2008

Tesco is the secret bidder behind one of the new "eco-towns" shortlisted for development by the Government.

Britain's biggest retailer plans to build a large "environmentally friendly" store in the centre of the proposed town in a move that will further increase Tesco's high-street dominance...read more...
 

 Pressure on Leahy as Tesco feels the pinch

The Observer, 6th April 2008

Sir Stuart Rose is not the only knight of the retail realm who has been slipping on banana skins in recent weeks. There has been a steady flow of bad news from Tesco and chief executive Sir Terry Leahy will face fierce scrutiny when he delivers the supermarket's results next Tuesday...read more...

 Tesco drops its drive to sell clothes onlineThe Times, 1st April 2008

Speculation that Tesco is losing its golden touch intensified yesterday as Britain's biggest supermarket shelved plans to sell clothing online...read more... Tesco shelves expansion of chain in US

The Sunday Telegraph, 30th March 2008

Tesco has halted the rollout of Fresh & Easy, its chain of US convenience stores, while it reviews the performance of the fledgling business. The move will spark renewed speculation about the performance of Britain's biggest retailer in the world's largest consumer spending market...read more...

 Sainsbury’s in £3m scandal over potato bungs

The Sunday Times, 16th March 2008

Sainsbury’s, the supermarket group, was this weekend embroiled in a £3m bribes investigation after one of its most senior buyers was arrested on suspicion of accepting backhanders from a potato supplier...read more... 

 Tesco slaps £16m writ on Thai critic

The Observer, March 16 2008

A former Thailand MP who is now the secretary general of the Thai chamber of commerce is facing a £16m legal claim from Tesco for speaking out against the retailer in his home country...read more...

 Channel 4 cleared over Tesco child labour story

The Guardian, 25th February 2008

A Tesco complaint about a Channel 4 News item on child labour has been rejected by media regulator Ofcom...read more...

 Arriving soon at Stonehenge: 480 trucks a day from Tesco's 'megashed'

The Guardian, 23rd February 2008

· Warehouse to be one of largest buildings in Europe 
· Scheme could cause traffic chaos, AA warns
It is known as "the gateway to the south-west" and the "holiday trail". But the A303, which links Devon with the M3, is also notorious as a road plagued by tailbacks where frustrated families queue for hours en route to the English riviera and beyond...read more...

 Asda expansion to create 9,000 jobs

Just.Food.com, 20 February 2008

Asda has today (20 February) announced it is to create more than 9,000 jobs this year through new store openings, extensions and business expansion...read more...

 ‘Buy one, get one free? The grower has to pay for those, and gets no say in it’

The Times, 15th February 2008

Few farmers are brave enough to speak publicly about sharp practices employed by supermarkets to keep prices down and boost profits. Many say that they operate in a climate of fear and risk losing business if they make any rumblings, let alone lodge any formal complaints...read more...

 New regulator must be given the teeth to keep powerful retailers in check, farming chiefs say

The Times, 15th February 2008

“Offshop”, which will arbitrate disputes between supermarkets and suppliers, must be given powers to conduct unannounced audits at food companies, farmers’ leaders say...read more...

 Small traders fear plan that will let the big chains take over town centres

The Times, 15th February 2008

Controversial measures to boost the number of supermarkets and encourage huge new superstores on the edge of towns are expected to be backed by the Competition Commission...read more...

 Supermarkets fear tougher regulation

Daily Telegraph, 11th February 2008

Leading retailers fear that the Competition Commission will recommend the creation of an independent regulator to police the relationships between suppliers and supermarkets when it publishes its remedies statement this week...read more...

 

 Supermarket role for OFT

The Sunday Times, 10th February 2008

THE Office of Fair Trading (OFT) could be handed a key role in policing the expansion of the biggest supermarkets when competition regulators publish a long-awaited remedies statement this week in the final stages of a two-year inquiry into the £120 billion grocery market...read more...

 Asda seeks Government blessing to take on 'Tesco towns'

Sunday Telegraph, 10th February 2008

Asda, Britain's third-biggest supermarket chain, is lobbying for planning rules to be suspended in so-called "Tesco towns", a move which would allow the Wal-Mart- owned retailer to build giant out-of-town superstores on greenfield sites, The Sunday Telegraph has learned...read more...

 Watchdog moves on "Tesco Towns"

The Observer,  February 10 2008

The Competition Commission will this week reveal the details of a tough new planning restriction designed to stem the rise of so-called 'Tesco towns', where one supermarket dominates the shopping landscape...read more...

 Tesco outposts facing Polish revolt

The Guardian, Monday February 4 2008

According to their union, full-time store staff are taking home £165 a month.
The bleeping of the tills stops and the Tesco cashiers grin conspiratorially when I ask to see Iwona Mandat, the head of the Work Confederation, Poland's newest trade union...read more...

 Tesco 'curbs' its suppliers' prices

Sunday Telegraph, 2nd February 2008

Suppliers to Tesco, the UK's biggest supermarket, have complained that the retailer is not allowing them to increase their prices until the end of its financial year in a bid to keep prices in its stores down...read more...

 Wal-Mart prepares small U.S. stores to fend off Tesco

Reuters, 1st February 2008

Wal-Mart Stores Inc is actively working to open its first small-scale grocery stores in Arizona, according to city planning officials, as the world's largest retailer looks to fend off competition from British supermarket rival Tesco...read more...

 Tesco plans high street outlets to take on department store chains

Financial Times, 22nd January 2008

Tesco is plotting an assault on the high street with plans to build department store-style shops to take on the likes of Debenhams, BHS and Marks and Spencer...read more...

 MP in conflict of interest claim on disputes

Daily Telegraph, 22nd January 2008

The role of property consultancies in planning disputes between supermarkets and councils will come under the spotlight later this week when an MP claims that "horrifying" conflicts of interest exist in the planning system...read more...