Last week, in the context of how small businesses are finding it very tough to do business in the current century, especially if they do not change, the former Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett spoke about how difficult it is to be Newsagents.
"Small businesses are going to be squeezed," said Mr Kennett (starting from 1 min 47 sec in the video clip below). About Newsagents, Mr Kennett went on to say "... they are absolutely on their backs." And while NANA would not technically disagree with Mr Kennett's observations, it is not the complete picture.
Under the decades old existing arrangements how Newsagents have conducted their trade, it is true to say that Newsagents have never found it harder to do business for a whole host of reasons, including contractual reasons, downturn in retail consumer confidence post GFC, unfair competition with larger business like supermarkets, and the behavioural change in media consumption especially via the Internet.
But the central point of Mr Kennett's comment is that Newsagents must change in order to survive (let alone prosper). On that, we are in complete agreement. And Newsagents are already changing toward a better future. We respectfully do not need reminders on what is wrong with our industry. What we need are leaders who will help us toward an economically brighter tomorrow.