02/07/2015 - 09:41

Coles gets ACCC nod for Perth store

02/07/2015 - 09:41

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Coles has avoided a public review by the consumer watchdog by offering to divest its freehold interest in a development in Perth's southern suburbs so it can operate a new supermarket nearby in Lakelands.

Coles gets ACCC nod for Perth store
ACCC chairman Rod Sims.

Coles has avoided a public review by the consumer watchdog by offering to divest its freehold interest in a development in Perth's southern suburbs so it can operate a new supermarket nearby in Lakelands.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission says it will not oppose the supermarket giant’s proposed acquisition of a lease to operate the new store in Lakelands if it divests the Singleton site, where Coles has planned to open a new store, to an approved purchaser.

“The ACCC’s concerns were that the proposed acquisition would have the effect, or would be likely to have the effect, of substantially lessening competition in the local retail supermarket market surrounding the Lakelands site,” chairman Rod Sims said.

“However, these concerns were remedied by the divesture undertaking.”

Coles already operates a supermarket in Meadow Springs, which is within five kilometres of Lakelands.

If it doesn’t divest Singleton, then it could likely operate three full-line supermarkets in an area where the only other supermarket is the proposed Aldi in the Lakelands development, which isn’t expected to open until late 2016 at the earliest.

“As the divesture undertaking offered by Coles at an early stage addressed the competition concern, the ACCC did not consider it necessary to conduct a full public review of the proposed acquisition,” the watchdog said.

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