The giant Woolworths supermarket group has unleashed an expensive media storm today in its pursuit establishing pharmacies in supermarkets. Woolworths CEO Roger Corbett has been the media tart of the day getting on TV, radio, in print and online. He says it’s all about saving money for consumers. Nonsense. It’s about Woolworths bottom line and Corbett’s compensation. This ABC Online story is more balanced than much of the reporting. At the other end of the spectrum is the Today Tonight story. Unbalanced and built around a price comparison of pharmacies and online services. Of course, the online service does not provide the face to face care and attention of a pharmacist.
This is a battle of epic proportions and every independent business small business owner ought to engage to ensure that Woolworths does not win. There is more at stake here than the sale of prescription drugs in supermarkets. The Woolworths proposal, if it gets up, will see more small businesses close, customer service fall and Australia lose more independent family owned businesses.
The Woolwoprths press release can be found here.
Pharmacists need to get smart and quickly if they are to stop the Woolworths trial going ahead.
Why do I care? Because I own a couple of small businesses and they are at risk from such predatory opportunistic action as pharmacies and it’s only after the forest is razed that you realise how much you wished it was there. There is still time to stop Woolworths.