The industry view on Coles and Wesfarmers is that the takeover will struggle as Bunnings operates with a totally different retail model. They buy on consignment, suppliers carry the stock cost and manage replenishment. Coles brands operate on totally different models, which Bunnings appear not to understand. At Myer, look out for a double digit sales decline for the second half, which they will report in September. As John Fletcher now knows, in retail you can’t cost cut your way to greatness. Bill and Bernie (B1 and B2 as we call them) are now discovering that. Big profits are fine, but if customers stopping buying from you (which is happening), then you are in big trouble.

VB Lite is a sign of just how badly things are going at Foster’s. Sales of their flagship brands such as Crown Lager are now being surpassed by Corona, Stella Artois, Heineken and Becks. What other of their domestic brands are also in trouble? Redevelopment of the Abbotsford Brewery site will be the next project on Trevor O’Hoy’s agenda – the last time this was considered it was called Project Blue Suit, what will they call it next time? Project Green?

Just surfing the net for some State of Origin coverage this morning – has Brisbane’s Courier Mail got a crystal ball? It says their Origin story was published at 8.40pm, which would be at halftime I think. They’re better than I thought!

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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