ACCC proposes to authorise Clubs Australia’s collective bargaining arrangements

12 December 2013

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission proposes to authorise collective bargaining arrangements put forward by Clubs Australia for five years.

Clubs Australia, representing 6,500 licensed clubs across Australia, has sought authorisation to negotiate and/or enter into agreements on behalf of its current and future members with a number of specific suppliers of major goods and services to registered clubs across Australia, including wagering services, energy services, and insurance.

“The ACCC considers the arrangements are likely to result in transaction cost savings for clubs and suppliers and more effective input into agreements,” ACCC Deputy Chair Dr Michael Schaper said.

“Any potential detriment is limited by the fact that all parties can choose whether or not to participate in collective negotiations, and that the suppliers are free to supply their goods elsewhere, because clubs are unlikely to represent a large proportion of purchasers in most instances. In other instances, suppliers are monopolies or large global companies.”

Authorisation provides statutory protection from court action for conduct that might otherwise raise concerns under the competition provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010. Broadly, the ACCC may grant an authorisation when it is satisfied that the public benefit from the conduct outweighs any public detriment.

Further information is available on the authorisation register.

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