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: : Jan-Jun 2000

Retail sales stay flat for third month in row. Australian retail sales remained flat for the third consecutive month, according to the Byvan-Australian Financial Review retail sales index for May. .... 29 Jun, 2000
Pizza war's first casualty. They take cheese very seriously in the pizza game. So seriously, in fact, that Pizza Hut and rival Domino's have become embroiled in a bitter battle over just which chain has the most cheese - and meat - on their pizzas. .... 29 Jun, 2000
Century 21 to launch in Asia. The Australian arm of the global real estate chain Century 21 is extending its project marketing business, with plans to launch into Asia in the next three months. .... 28 Jun, 2000
E-tailer links to BP for parcel pick-up. The fledgling e-tailer,, has struck a landmark $5 million deal with BP Australia to enable customers to pick up parcels from BP petrol stations in all major cities. .... 28 Jun, 2000
Harvey World Travel keeps franchisees on side and on net. Funnelling resources away from the traditional network and into online sales is rarely welcomed by a franchise owner so when retail travel company, Harvey World Travel, listed on the ASX in December, fresh internet funding was high in the company's mind. .... 27 Jun, 2000
Rod gets the bun's rush from 'feudal' McDonald's. Fast-food giant McDonald's ran a "feudal empire" under which its Australian arm tried to force out a Melbourne franchisee for blowing the whistle on the franchise system, the Victorian Supreme Court heard yesterday. .... 27 Jun, 2000
INTEREST - TheSpot looks to have sunk into David Jones' locker. Online retail pioneer TheSpot is believed to have joined the dot com casualty list, falling into the hands of "bricks and mortar" retailer David Jones after the withdrawal of major shareholder, f2 Investments. .... 23 Jun, 2000
Retail confidence takes a GST dip. Australia's leading retailers are less optimistic than they were six months ago, according to the just released Survey of Retailer Sentiment from Jones Lang LaSalle. .... 22 Jun, 2000
Freedom finds an MD inside the square. Furniture retailer Freedom Group has promoted retail director Mr Rod Walker to managing director, ending a three-month search to replace Mr Barry Scott. .... 21 Jun, 2000
Retailers look to tough times. Confidence among Australia's retailers has collapsed in the wake of rising interest rates, price increases, the introduction of the GST and the prospect of a post-Olympics sales slowdown. .... 19 Jun, 2000
GPG suspected of stalking Freedom. Speculation has intensified that a corporate predator is building a position on the register of beleaguered furniture retailer Freedom Group Ltd, with volumes in the stock surging over the past seven trading sessions. .... 19 Jun, 2000
Aussie isn't for sale, says founder. Aussie Home Loans managing director Mr John Symond has scotched industry rumours that he is preparing to sell the business, while conceding the company will need to review its capital structure in the next year. .... 16 Jun, 2000
Shopping centres 'good for small business'. Australia's shopping centre industry, with $34 billion worth of malls and supermarkets across the country, attracted $50 billion in retail sales last year to capture 40 per cent of the nation's total retail turnover. .... 16 Jun, 2000
It's no go for Gohs in bid to lift Rebel stake. Singapore's Goh brothers will pursue other options to bolster their stake in Rebel Sport after withdrawing from a deal which would have handed them a 38 per cent holding in the sporting goods retailer. .... 15 Jun, 2000
Harvey Norman holds big hopes for Slovenia store. Retailer Harvey Norman plans to use Slovenia as the base for its push into Europe over the next five to ten years. .... 12 Jun, 2000
Don't underestimate the enemy, Gerry. Gently humming Gerry Harvey's theme song while browsing the great man's Web site in search of a Toshiba Satellite 2650 W98 Notebook computer, I noticed a curious anomaly: Gerry wanted $5,199 for his laptop. .... 7 Jun, 2000
Sizzling electricals defy trend. Electrical goods merchants, led by Harvey Norman, are enjoying "extremely strong" trading conditions in defiance of both soft demand in the broader retail sector and an anticipated sharp decline in sales in the lead-up to the GST. .... 5 Jun, 2000
Goh initiative clouds Rebel's best profit. Rebel Sport has issued its best annual profit since listing seven years ago but the result failed to distract large investors from their attempts to stop Singapore's Goh brothers from acquiring a major stake in the retailer. .... 3 Jun, 2000
There's plenty more in store at Harvey Norman. While Harvey Norman Holdings Ltd's core business of selling computers, furniture and electrical goods continues to boom, the retailer has not been resting on its laurels. .... 3 Jun, 2000
The tax time bomb that could destroy John Howard and Peter Costello. Lyall Howard did not need an Australian Business Number to operate his service station in the Sydney suburb of Dulwich Hill. .... 3 Jun, 2000
Retailers can shop around for e-tailers. Yesterday's slow-moving bricks-and-mortar retailers are set to become tomorrow's winners as e-tailers struggling to survive the fallout of the dot com crash prepare to sell up. .... 30 May, 2000
Fels, Video Ezy star in GST court clash. Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chairman Dr Allan Fels strongly warned businesses against price rises not directly related to the GST as he launched a court action on Friday against Video Ezy for alleged price exploitation. .... 27 May, 2000
Cyber store looks at getting physical. Online retailer dstore expects to branch out into owning physical stores this year as part of its multi-channel approach and predicts it will turn a profit from its core business by mid-2002. .... 26 May, 2000
INTEREST - Boo's demise sent shock waves through dot.coms. BOO.COM's collapse last Friday has Irish dotcom directors chewing the ends of their pens, and analysts expect further casualties as Darwinian law applies itself to the burgeoning sector in the near future. .... 26 May, 2000
Easter fails to ignite retail sales. National retail sales continued to disappoint in April, despite the month benefiting from the impact of Easter. .... 25 May, 2000

Book sellers prepare to take on the Amazon. Two local Internet retailers are preparing to tackle US book site's dominance of Australian sales by expanding their supply of titles and linking with well-known bricks-and-mortar brands. .... 19 May, 2000
Book site opens trans-Tasman chapter. has emerged with a strategic stake in an ambitious online book play that will span the Tasman after the merger of Australian e-tailer TheSpot and New Zealand internet "supersite" FlyingPig. .... 19 May, 2000
Dymocks wins fight for site. Dymocks Holdings, franchisor of about 80 Dymocks Booksellers stores, has won a Supreme Court declaration that it owns the loss-making Web site and its franchisees have no share in it. .... 16 May, 2000
Dymocks' e-tail plan brought to book. Dymocks Holdings has been told by the NSW Supreme Court to pay substantial damages to three franchisees it has cut out of its internet business ahead of a planned initial public offering. .... 16 May, 2000
Freedom expects leaner half. Furniture retailer Freedom Group expects recent interest rate rises and waning consumer spending to slow sales and earnings growth during the company's second half. .... 11 May, 2000

Three agencies punt on AFG mortgages. Three of Australia's largest residential real estate agencies - Century 21, PRD Realty and Nationwide Realty - have decided to help sell mortgages through agreements with one of Australia's largest mortgage wholesalers, Australian Finance Group. .... 8 May, 2000
Sale time as shops battle the elements. Early warning signs that the economy has dropped a couple of gears have started to appear in shopfronts around the country, with sale signs being plastered across store windows as retailers embark on strategies to lift generally flat sales. .... 2 May, 2000

Dymocks, franchisees in ad dispute. Dymocks' attempts to advertise and sell books over the Web have been a failure, losing $632,000 since its site was set up in 1997, and it wants its 90-odd franchisees to help defray the cost, arguing that the site provides advertising which benefits them all. .... 18 Apr, 2000

Dymocks goes to court on website rights. The nation's largest bookseller, Dymocks, has sought a court order cutting its franchisees out of its website ahead of a proposed float of the internet business. .... 18 Apr, 2000

Franchisees and shaky market threaten CBA bid. The value of Commonwealth Bank's $9 billion bid for Colonial is under question, with concerns about the impact of any fall in the sharemarket and fears that CBA will not be able to retain Colonial State Bank's franchisees. .... 17 Apr, 2000
Retailers lose site of net potential. Many Australian retailers are focusing too much of their information technology investment on business-to-consumer (B2C) sales drives when they could make more profits by using IT to enhance the value of their existing assets, including property, according to a visiting retail expert from the US. .... 11 Apr, 2000

Goh brothers take Rebel route to dstore. Speculation is rife that the Singapore-based Goh brothers intend to either seek a merger with online department store, dstore, or make a play for the group. .... 11 Apr, 2000
Harvey Norman success always nicely surprises. With a certain amount of perversity investors have greeted almost all of Harvey Norman's usually spectacular sales and profit numbers with an impending sense of dread. .... 7 Apr, 2000
Rebel slice could be on the Goh. The category-killer retailer Rebel Sport is set to come under the control of Singapore investors if its shareholders approve a deal that would let Sussan Corp sell out of the company. .... 5 Apr, 2000

Colonial's franchisees face a deal of uncertainty. The continuity of franchising agreements struck between Colonial Ltd and 87 operators of its branch network is up in the air as a result of the proposed merger deal with Commonwealth Bank of Australia. .... 3 Apr, 2000

Key up for grabs in hotel lockout. When the managing director of Radisson Hotels & Resorts gets locked out of a meeting in his own hotel, you know something is wrong. .... 1 Apr, 2000
Luxury homes have high price tag for Games. Companies such as Reebok, IBM, McDonald's and Telstra will spend up to $100,000 each a week to accommodate their executives during the Sydney Olympics, most lengthening their stay to five weeks. .... 20 Mar, 2000
Net retailers 'don't have a hope.' Harvey Norman Holdings Ltd chairman Gerry Harvey yesterday poured cold water on Internet retailing in Australia, saying his company's online sales were disappointing so far. .... 20 Mar, 2000
Harvey predicts e-collapse. In two television interviews, he also said the company's fledgling internet operations were not performing as well as hoped. He predicted the collapse of most so-called "e-tailers". .... 20 Mar, 2000
Booming Harvey Norman ready to double size. Harvey Norman has set itself a rigorous program of store openings across Australia and Asia that could double the company's current size by 2005. .... 15 Mar, 2000
Harvey gets going on profit boost. Shares in Harvey Norman Holdings Ltd yesterday surged 6.4 per cent after it reported a 58.9 per cent jump in interim net profit and indicated full-year sales growth from franchised Harvey Norman stores and the group's own trading would at least meet its 15 per cent target. .... 15 Mar, 2000
Stores corner the time poor. Remember the corner shop? Today, the convenience store is staging a comeback, though with giants like Woolworths and Coles chasing the just-in-time buyer, the outlets are far more sophisticated than a generation ago. .... 11 Mar, 2000
Analysts puzzled as Freedom's Scott quits. Freedom Furniture's managing director, Mr Barry Scott, has quit the company, leaving abruptly to pursue "new personal commercial interests". .... 11 Mar, 2000
Marriott leads running for Surfers resort. The aggressive US hotelier is understood to have ousted Singaporean investor Mr C.K.Ow and British-bankrolled Hilton International from the bidding fray on the 330-room hotel. .... 9 Mar, 2000
The miracle is starting to fray at the edges. The slide in retail sales in December and January suggests, beyond reasonable doubt, that the economy peaked in late 1999 and is on track for a slowdown in 2000. .... 2 Mar, 2000
Hard sell against the death penalty. Is Benetton's death row "catalogue" social commentary or crass advertising? .... 1 Mar, 2000
Harvey spreads wings up north. Aggressive retailer Harvey Norman Holdings Ltd is bolstering its Brisbane presence with a string of new outlets, including its first CBD store in the country. .... 24 Feb, 2000
A ritzy deal for Mr Ow. Singaporean hotel magnate Mr C.K. Ow has completed his purchase of Sydney's Ritz-Carlton hotel and is rumoured to be in the running for the purchase of the Marriott Surfers Paradise. .... 15 Feb, 2000
Locals out to make big starbucks. North America's largest coffee shop chain, Starbucks, has signed up with Australian partner Mr Markus Hofer and will open its first outlet in the next few months. .... 13 Feb, 2000
Retailers urge clarity on price tags. Retailers demanded yesterday that the Federal Government urgently clarify its policy on the display of "before and after" prices during the transition to the GST. .... 9 Feb, 2000
Bass basks in its added regional firepower. Bass Hotels and Resorts' $315 million acquisition last month of Australia's second-largest hotelier, SPHC Group, didn't raise many eyebrows in the local industry. .... 9 Feb, 2000
McDonald's Fined Over Resteraunt Death. McDonald's has been fined 106,000 after an employee was electrocuted in one of its Australian restaurants. .... 4 Feb, 2000
Marks Spencer puts paid to staid. Struggling British retailer Marks & Spencer will shed its dowdy past and unveil sleek new storefronts that change by night and day as part of an extensive image overhaul, people close to the company say. .... 8 Feb, 2000
Pizza Express Tops Up Profits. A serving of extra restaurants helped Pizza Express report a strong set of half yearly results with profits and sales both ahead by around 15%. .... 7 Feb, 2000
Sour notes ruin Eck's symphony. Harvey Norman is cruising along, David Jones seems to have finally begun to show signs of a better-than-usual sales performance and Woolworths is also sailing along well. .... 4 Feb, 2000
Freedom has never had it better. Strong consumer spending and acquisitions boosted Freedom Furniture's sales 54 per cent in the first quarter. .... 1 Feb, 2000
Can't trust the chook? That's betrayal, Colonel. Starbucks Corp. said earnings for its fiscal first quarter will exceed earlier expectations. The Seattle-based company, which operates or licenses nearly 2,700 coffee shops worldwide, expects. .... 27 Jan, 2000
Retail sales up 4.7pc. Retail sales grew 4.7 per cent in December, driven by the success of department stores in repositioning themselves for survival in Australia's intensely competitive retail market. .... 27 Jan, 2000
Colonial's retailers ring up the sales. Christmas was kind to Colonial First State Property Group, with the newly merged vehicle's retail assets turning in strong sales growth. .... 22 Jan, 2000
Amway can see the benefits of moving its network online. Global network marketing company Amway will launch an Australian website in April to squeeze further value from its warehousing operations, president Mr Dick DeVos said yesterday. .... 19 Jan, 2000
Harvey soars on sales high. Shares in Harvey Norman Holdings continued to sprint higher yesterday, after the retailer's announcement of record half-year sales on Friday. .... 18 Jan, 2000
Five-star Marriott Surfers next on the shopping list. If you're already committed to spending $317 million, what's another $65 million?. .... 18 Jan, 2000
Bass checks into hotel chain. United Kingdom-based Bass Hotels and Resorts has signed up for the 128 million ($315 million) acquisition of rival hotelier SPHC Group, as consolidation continues to sweep the hotel industry. .... 18 Jan, 2000
Good start for Harvey Norman. Robust Christmas spending underpinned by a buoyant economy helped power Harvey Norman Holdings Ltd to a 21.3 per cent increase in first-half sales, setting the scene for a solid reporting season for Australia's retailers. .... 15 Jan, 2000
Mortgage Choice to go for insurance. Fast-growing home loan broker Mortgage Choice is preparing to expand its brokering service into other financial products, starting with insurance. .... 12 Jan, 2000
New Poland takes on the West's focus: capitalism. "Spotkajmy sie w McDonald's!' reads the distinctive red and yellow banner stretched across Warsaw's central railway station. ("Let's meet at McDonald's.") .... 9 Jan, 2000
David Lawrence fits into jigsaw. The company that brought the UK-based Jigsaw women's fashion label to Australia, M Webster Holdings Pty Ltd, has boosted its retail presence with the acquisition of the David Lawrence store network from the failed Sportsgirl Sportscraft Group Pty Ltd. .... 5 Jan, 2000
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