Thursday, 14 October 2010

OFT ... no surprise there then ... can't wait for it to be merged with the Competition Commission

Clearly the OFT will not be swayed in this matter at present, despite a pseudo-consumer group such as CAMRA making their super-complaint.

The OFT will not have been blind to the political implications of acceding to this petition and have no doubt observed the players involved and their respective affiliations.

It is now time for tied tenants to galvanise the support of the vast number of loyal customers who are being put at a disadvantage by the tied model in the UK pub market.

It isn’t for CAMRA (good as their intentions were) to organise a super complaint it is those who are directly affected by it i.e. tied tenants and through them, their customers.

I believe that the only way that the OFT will consider this matter and live up to their remit (which I quote from their own website) is if there is a legitimate ground swell from consumers:

“The OFT's mission is to make markets work well for consumers. We achieve this by promoting and protecting consumer interests throughout the UK, while ensuring that businesses are fair and competitive.”

The incessant bickering and internecine squabbling must stop in the licensed trade if we truly believe that the tied model is bad for tenants (as consumers of the pubco/brewers’ goods and services) and our customers need the OFT’s protection.

Only question is how do we go about it? Jaw Jaw or War War? 

for the full story see Morning Advertiser


Cooking Lager said...

Crikey, you publicans. winge winge winge.

Everyone in a tied pub signed the contract. Buyer beware, don't buy a crock.

The government aren't going to bail the pub industry out with protectionist price controls or letting people off freely signed commercial contracts. Nor should they.

Let pubs go bust and let new buyers either make a better go of it or turn 'em into flats or a Tesco Express.

Publican Sam said...

I don't think anyone, least of all publicans, want the government to bail out pubs, that is not the point.

Whilst I take on board your comments about "freely signed commercial contracts" there is much evidence that sharp practice has been employed by pubcos, which has only recently been addressed by the industry, that in all too many cases led to contracts that were and remain unfair.

Cross-party support for the concept that a tied tenant should be no worse-off than a free of tie tenant and the long awaited Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors consultation on rents in the industry allude to this.

I feel that the majority of consumers would much prefer a welcoming pub than yet another Tesco Express or any other supermarket.

Even with a vested interest in their continuance, I for one would hate to see pubs disappear from our cultural landscape.