Kirkcaldy ‘key test’ in ASDA-Sainsbury’s merger

A proposed £7.3bn merger between ASDA and Sainsbury’s could present “key concerns” for Kirkcaldy, Lesley Laird MP has warned.

The supermarket giants enjoy an average 30 per cent share of the market nationwide, but despite the presence of competitors such as Marks and Spencer, Lidl, Aldi and Morrisons, the duo dominate in Kirkcaldy with a 50 per cent share of the market.

As a result, Lesley is calling on the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to consider the merger’s potential impact on the town.

She said: “We’ve heard there will be no store closures, but that’s not legally binding for the long-term and we’ve heard no assurances that the deal won’t result in job losses, changes to pay, terms and conditions.

“There’s no doubt such a big brand duopoly would result in never-before-seen bargaining power; power which could potentially bring prices down for consumers. But at whose expense?

“Suppliers, farmers and manufacturers are operating in an incredibly tough retail market as it is. 

“With the growth and development of on-line supermarket retailers this squeeze across the retail sector and supply chain is only likely to intensify.

“Conversely, the deal could limit consumer choice and actually lead to higher product prices in the long term.

She concluded: “It’s a highly uncertain situation and presents a number of key concerns for Kirkcaldy which the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) must fully investigate.”


Pic: Elliot Brown