Ken Henry launches attack on bank tax … George Calombaris sued over food poisoning incident … Shoppers want SMEs to deliver faster

George Calombaris

Source: AAP Image/Adrian Buman

By Emma Koehn and Dominic Powell 

Former Treasury Secretary and current National Australia Bank chairman has given a scathing assessment of the bank tax unveiled in last week’s federal budget.

Speaking to Fairfax, Henry said the he couldn’t believe the lack of consultation about the policy prior to its announcement.

“What has come out of the consultation is that it was very hurriedly put together,” Henry said.

“This levy will be borne by customers right across the economy.”

Meanwhile, Henry told The Australian there should be a full public inquiry into how the “bad tax policy” was formulated.

Hellenic Republic faces lawsuit

Celebrity chef and Masterchef judge George Calombaris’ high-profile restaurant Hellenic Republic is reportedly being sued over a 2014 case of food poisoning that forced the restaurant to shut for 24 hours.

Fairfax reports Melbourne resident David Schreuder is suing the Melbourne restaurant and Calombaris’ Made Establishment Group after he allegedly became seriously ill after eating there in 2014.

Schreuder is reportedly seeking damages for the injuries caused by the sickness, but a spokesperson for Made Establishment told Fairfax it was “not formally advised of any new claim dating back to the May 2014 incident”.

The potential lawsuit comes in the wake of last month’s revelation that Calombaris’ restaurants had underpaid a large number of employees, who received backpay of over $16,000 each.

Shoppers think SMEs are behind on delivery

A recent survey by online payments company PayPal has shown SMEs are failing to live up to consumer’s expectations when it comes to convenient and fast shipping.

The survey of more than 1000 shoppers and more than 200 businesses shows 42% of shoppers believe Australian online businesses are behind when it comes to delivery, and 57% will be deterred from shopping at a store more than once if shipping times are too long.

Nearly two thirds of consumers said they would “definitely” buy from online businesses that offered next day delivery, but only one third of businesses currently offer the service. Fifty-four percent said they had “no plan” to introduce the service in the next five years.

“With two online shopping giants, Alibaba and Amazon, poised to enter the Australian market, local consumers will have greater choice and online retail will be more competitive,” managing director at PayPal Australia Libby Roy said in a statement.

“To compete effectively, Australian businesses need to think beyond ‘units sold’ and understand their customer’s full engagement lifecycle including shipping, returns and other value-added benefits.”

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