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Loblaw's pricing strategies under scrutiny

Supplier memo from last year reveals strict policies

Loblaw’s pricing practices have been under scrutiny for the past month after the Competition Bureau confirmed they probing certain practices related to “pricing strategies and programs” by Loblaw with respect to its suppliers which “could raise concerns under the Competition Act.”

The retailer’s pricing strategy has been further analyzed after the Globe and Mail obtained a five-page supplier memo titled “Loblaw 2014 policies” which was distributed in 2013.

READ: Competition Bureau investigates Loblaw’s ‘pricing strategies’

Among the policies in the memo, Loblaw said “if a rival retailer touted the vendors’ products at a lower price, Loblaw would offer its customers the same price markdown and expect the vendor to pay the cost difference.”

It also said it would not accept price increases from suppliers for the rest of 2014 and 2015, and that all suppliers were subject to a “three strike” policy.

Loblaw spokesman Kevin Groh told The Globe and Mail Loblaw issued an updated version of its policies in June with softened pricing terms. He also noted the retailer had done away with the three strike policy.

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