Lawn Solutions Australia Group Pty Ltd (LSA)

Company or individual details

  • Lawn Solutions Australia Group Pty Ltd (LSA)
    161 332 323

Undertaking

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has accepted a court enforceable undertaking from Lawn Solutions Australia Group Pty Ltd (LSA) under section 87B of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) (CCA).

The ACCC was concerned that LSA may have engaged, or attempted to engage, in a concerted practice, or attempted to induce others to engage in a concerted practice, with the purpose, effect, or likely effect of substantially lessening competition by suppressing or hindering price competition in the retail supply of instant turf in the greater Sydney region.

LSA primarily carries on business as a turf breeder which involves developing, licensing, and marketing instant turf products. LSA operates as part of a network of turf growers and resellers, which supplies a substantial portion of instant turf in Australia.

On various occasions between November 2017 and May 2021, LSA circulated price surveys with requests that growers and resellers set their prices in line with its recommended retail prices (RRP). The communications also put pressure on individual growers or resellers to increase prices if they sold turf at a price below the RRP.

In addition, on more than one occasion, LSA contacted, directly and indirectly, a rival turf breeder about the prices of the competitor’s turf.

LSA has acknowledged that the conduct had the capacity to suppress or hinder price competition and that it raised concerns as to its compliance with the concerted practices provision, section 45(1)(c) of the CCA.

To address the ACCC’s concerns, LSA provided the ACCC with a section 87B undertaking that it will cease:

  • communicating retail pricing information to LSA growers and resellers if the information discloses or could be used to infer the future, current or recent prices of other individual growers and resellers;
  • communicating any request or expectation that LSA growers or resellers not discount LSA turf or price by reference to LSA’s RRP or some other price benchmark;
  • communicating with LSA growers by asking them to contact resellers to request that they not discount LSA turf or price by reference to LSA’s RRP or some other price benchmark;
  • facilitating any meeting of two or more LSA growers where guidance for retail pricing of LSA turf is set or determined; and
  • communicating directly or indirectly with any of its competitors, with a view to coordinating retail prices or discouraging discounting.

LSA further undertakes to provide regular practical compliance training on competition law in Part IV of the CCA to its staff and LSA growers for a period of 3 years.