Australian Newsagency Blog

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Fairfax duds newsagents with Financial Review price rise

Mark Fletcher
March 28th, 2015 · 16 Comments

Fairfax has announced the cover price of the Australian Financial Review increases 8.5% from Tuesday April 7 yet the gross profit increase permitted by Fairfax to retail newsagents is only 2.5%.

Fairfax is double dipping. They are increasing the cover price and reducing the margin permitted.

This is an appalling move by Fairfax against small business newsagents. It’s unethical and socially irresponsible. Shame on you Fairfax.

A newsagent selling the Australian Financial Review for $3.80 will make only $0.3636 from the sale.  My AFR pocket costs me $2.50 a day. The retail space cost increases 5% a year. Sliding backwards as I am with the AFR while Fairfax improves their situation leaves me wondering whether stocking the title is worth it. The good news is this is a decision I can make.

12 likes

Category: Ethics · Newspapers · Social responsibility

16 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Dean // Mar 28, 2015 at 8:44 AM

    Fairfax has been doing this with the Age and the Financial Review for 2 or 3 years now.

    News Ltd has also been doing the same thing for 1 year, although only to distribution agents.

    What are they going to do in a few years when distribution agents start going bust due to insufficient commissions?

    1 likes

  • 2 Mark Fletcher // Mar 28, 2015 at 8:52 AM

    Dean we are seeing what they are doing today as newsagents hand back distribution runs due to unprofitability. Nothing. We have to call out this behaviour. They are telling newsagents they don’t care about them.

    0 likes

  • 3 shauns // Mar 28, 2015 at 10:13 AM

    I havnt sold Fairfax papers for 5 months . In 5 months I have had not one customer ask for it , that may change coming into the grey nomad season but I don’t think I will loose a great deal of sleep over it .

    2 likes

  • 4 jenny // Mar 28, 2015 at 10:23 AM

    Not happy about this but as Dean said its been happening for a few years so that’s the way it is now.

    Once again today the truck driver left our bulks of Fin Reviews behind, 1 key parcel only, so no Fins today for most subscribers, no Fins in any newsagency, supermarket or petrol outlet in the whole of our area. So frustrating!

    0 likes

  • 5 jenny // Mar 28, 2015 at 10:23 AM

    Not happy about this but as Dean said its been happening for a few years so that’s the way it is now.

    Once again today the truck driver left our bulks of Fin Reviews behind, 1 key parcel only, so no Fins today for most subscribers, no Fins in any newsagency, supermarket or petrol outlet in the whole of our area. So frustrating!

    1 likes

  • 6 Carol // Mar 28, 2015 at 10:54 AM

    Every time Fairfax want to send us information on anything they send me at least 5 identical Faxes. What ever happened to email? The only Fairfax title sell is 1 Financial Review a day as a special order yet I get reams of fazes from them.

    1 likes

  • 7 Dean // Mar 28, 2015 at 11:38 AM

    Mark, have you heard of runs being handed back in Victoria. I have only heard of 2.

    0 likes

  • 8 Amanda // Mar 28, 2015 at 5:58 PM

    Dean I know of plenty in NSW. I know of two more going back on the CENTRAL COAST very soon.

    1 likes

  • 9 Amanda // Mar 28, 2015 at 6:09 PM

    Mark there is no point whinging. This is not new news. Remove it from yourself like other smaller newsagents have done. If they want to disrespect retail newsagents, and you are upset about the commission you receive than it is simple….remove it.

    Your next article should not read “Fairfax duds newsagents”, as this has been happening for the past 20years.

    It should read “Why I have removed the Financial Review from my shelves”. Be a leader.

    4 likes

  • 10 Mark Fletcher // Mar 28, 2015 at 10:15 PM

    Amanda, thanks for the advice. This blog is the only public source of this move by Fairfax. While it may not be news to you it will be news to others. That I have written about it will piss some at Fairfax off as they’d rather their behavior not publicised. I’ve had two calls today from non circulation suppliers surprised Fairfax has done this. I’m proud to have let them know.

    13 likes

  • 11 Tony // Mar 29, 2015 at 9:58 AM

    And to think of the moral high ground they seem to take with their charter of journalistic independence or whatever they call it.

    3 likes

  • 12 Dennis Robertson // Mar 29, 2015 at 7:02 PM

    Looks like a few states missing from the list re increase in cover price.

    No SA, WA nor Tas. ??

    0 likes

  • 13 Mark Fletcher // Mar 29, 2015 at 7:14 PM

    Dennis I was sent this note by a newsagent in the state affected. Fairfax, unlike News, is not consistent at notifying the newsagency software companies about changes.

    0 likes

  • 14 Dennis Robertson // Mar 30, 2015 at 12:01 AM

    Mark, yes, I saw the Fairfax letterhead, just wondering if anyone out there knew why Fairfax did not include the other states given that NT is listed.

    Probably just something to do with FM regional set up for communications. No doubt we will get an advice in due course.

    Surely it can’t be that Fairfax Media has taken pity on SA and it’s basket case economy and decided not to put up the price here! LOL.

    On a more serious note, the new kids on the Publishers’ block won’t wake up to the unintended consequences of this latest bonus-driven idea until it’s all too late. What a cheap, shameful and short-sighted practice this is to cut Newsagents margins.

    Let’s hope News Corp are not emboldened by this FM move to bite into the Retail Newsagents margin as they already do for Distribution Newsagents.

    Some of the unintended consequences for News Corp in commencing this trashing of relationships with Dist. Newsagents are now beginning to be displayed in a lack of co-operation to certain requests associated with Retail papers. Surely they are not so stupid as to think Dist. Newsagents will allow HD income to subsidise work done on Retail papers? Or that Newsagents won’t push back against deliberate acts to reduce income. Crazy!

    Who is driving the boat now. I reckon some of the old-guard from Publisher Land would be turning in their graves at this folly.

    1 likes

  • 15 Chen // Apr 2, 2015 at 2:53 PM

    The notice I get says the fee is $0.72

    0 likes

  • 16 Shayne // Apr 3, 2015 at 8:08 AM

    72c is still way less than the 25% we used to get. 25% of $3.80 is 95c

    3 likes

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