The ACCC has issued a final determination re-authorising Myer to invite 'concession stores', which operate separate businesses within Myer stores and/or sell through Myer’s online retail store, to take part in Myer promotions.
The ACCC first authorised this type of cooperation between Myer and concession stores 15 years ago, and has continued to authorise it since then, providing protection from any potential breach of competition law.
The ACCC considers that the arrangements are likely to continue to promote competition through greater discounting by Myer and concession stores than in the absence of coordination by Myer. This discounting is, in turn, likely to lead to a competitive response from Myer’s rivals and concession stores’ rivals, benefiting customers through lower prices and more innovative service offerings.
The ACCC also considers that if concession stores were not invited to participate when Myer runs promotions, customers may be confused and disappointed to find that concession store products are excluded from the promotion. Therefore, the arrangements are likely to result in a public benefit through providing greater clarity and reducing the number of concession store exclusions from promotions.
While any type of coordination between competitors has the potential to reduce competition and discounting, the ACCC is not aware of any evidence that these arrangements have had this effect. Rather, the ACCC considers that the arrangements have promoted competition. Further, the ACCC considers that the potential for competitive detriment is limited by the fact that the arrangements are voluntary and because competitive pressure from other retailers ensures that Myer and concession stores have a strong incentive to compete, with or without these arrangements.
The ACCC has decided to re-authorise the arrangements for a further 10 years.
Please refer to the ACCC’s Public Register for further information.