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Harvey Norman Boss Bangs On About Nine Fairfax Deal, But Will She Pass On Savings To Suppliers

Harvey Norman chief executive Katie Page who recently got back from a Company supplier conference in Queensland claims that the merging of Fairfax and Nine should create cheaper ad rates but she has not said whether the mass retailer will pass on savings to suppliers.

What she has not explained is why a media organisation should suddenly cut rates simply because they have expanded their options, nor has she explained whether Harvey Norman will pass on rate cuts to their suppliers.

Currently Harvey Norman is treating advertising as a revenue stream with the big CE and appliance retailer buying advertising from media Companies and then on selling it at inflated prices to suppliers sometimes by as much as 100% mark up.

Page claims that consolidation in the industry was inevitable and ­predicted the Nine-Fairfax deal was the ­beginning of mergers in the sector.

“Consolidation will mean ­advertisers will be able to get cheaper ad rates,” she said.

“I want the industry to become more competitive as it allows it to offer more competitive advertising rates.

“Consolidation is an evolution which happens in every industry from time to time, and now it’s the media’s turn.”

Harvey Norman who are known as being one of the most expensive retailers when it comes to purchasing consumer electronics and appliances is a major ­advertiser on the Nine Network as well as in the major metropolitan Fairfax mastheads, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.

Ms Page said Harvey Norman would not change its advertising strategy as a result of the Nine takeover of Fairfax as it saw them as very different media products.

“I will always be buying television (advertising) separate to newspapers and their digital offerings, including Domain,” she said. “I see it as all being very separate. We will continue doing what we have been doing in the past with Nine. It has very different skill sets to print and digital.”

Businessman Dick Smith who last week was trying to manipulate the media into thinking that Aldi was a bad retailer because of the failure of his food Company said he hoped the takeover would still mean that Fairfax’s independent reporting would continue.

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