Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Are Kmart executives clueless

Mark Fletcher
September 9th, 2020 · 6 Comments

I was surprised to read this at The New Daily this afternoon:

Kmart comes out swinging against Premier Daniel Andrews
Retail giant Kmart has accused Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews of taking it by “complete surprise” by continuing the state’s coronavirus restrictions, and pledged to stand by its staff until its stores reopen.

The continued closure of shops across the Melbourne metropolitan region as part of Stage 4 restrictions have hurt retailers, with Kmart joining a chorus of business leaders criticising the Victorian premier.

Kmart managing director Ian Bailey said the unprecedented conditions had caused immense pain and hardship for the retail giant’s staff.

“The Victorian government’s roadmap for re-opening the state economy announced last Sunday took the retail sector and Kmart Group by complete surprise,” he said on Wednesday.

“We were not provided with any forewarning in relation to the massive extension to the continued closure of retail trading that was announced.”

I say surprised because the announcement of the extension by the Premier Sunday at noon was in line with my expectations and others in small business. Kmart should have better insights than me and many others in small business retail. Yet, we expected an extension based on the infection numbers we had been seeing.

Covid is a health emergency and the health issues need to be resolved first, ahead of big businesses moaning to be open.

I’m kind of surprised Kmart is closed when the Reject Shop is open.


Category: Social responsibility

6 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Peter // Sep 9, 2020 at 6:24 PM

    “pledged to stand by its staff”. Why do big business continue to trot out these hollow statements? I agree, stick to your balance sheet analysis Kmart and leave the health emergency to health professionals.


  • 2 Mark Fletcher // Sep 10, 2020 at 7:03 AM

    It frustrates me that media outlets appear pro preference stories like this re profit and share price over health. Also, their obsession with negative stories plays into consumer confidence. As I’ve noted here before, many businesses are doing well this year.


  • 3 Mark Richardson // Sep 11, 2020 at 9:47 AM

    Many people from all walks of life have come out and criticized Dan’s path out of lock down.
    It is not the time of the extension rather the targets which have been set which have caused concern.
    Of course this is a health issue but it has also become a mental health issue and a huge economic issue which unfortunately some will never recover.
    This is also about politics which we have seen around Australia with state premiers.
    The Andrew government’s handling and decision making all the way through from the quarantine debacle to now have been second rate and unfortunately the Victorian people have paid a huge price for this incompetence. Over 700 dead and families and friends devastated .
    Other states have faced similar challenges with over seas arrivals but the outcome has been very different to Victoria’s


  • 4 David // Sep 11, 2020 at 10:11 AM

    Are you even in Victoria Mark Richardson? If not shut up. Daniel Andrews has done and is doing an excellent job. Stupid people passed on the virus, not the Premier.

    If you want to look at poor policy decisions look at the commercial nursing homes that are overseen by the national government. They privatised them and have done nothing re oversight and now there are hundreds of deaths. Compare this to the lack of deaths in the state run nursing homes in Victoria.

    It is only become a mental health issue because of false reporting by Murdoch papers and the belief in these stories by the gullible.

    Most Victorians, and I am a Victorian born and raised, trust the Premier. While I am not is a stage 4 area, I am close to it and have family there.

    None of the people in small business I know are critical of what is being done in Victoria. What’s written here about kmart is spot on.


  • 5 Graeme Day // Sep 11, 2020 at 6:27 PM

    The culture of Big Business over a period up until now has been apalling.
    Whether Andrews is doing the “right” thing or not is so subjective it cannot be compared with others. The people of Victoria will judge the scene in their province which is not comparable to other States.
    Each State Premier has a knowledge of their constituents and pitch for their welfare so thay can get relected and providing this process is selective (with the problem at hand) the people will respect it. If not he is a gone Goose.


  • 6 Peter // Sep 11, 2020 at 8:37 PM

    Yes Graeme you are right about the appalling culture of big business look at Rio Tinto.


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