THE NEWS WRAP: David Jones defends rejecting Myer merger

Department store chain David Jones has said it will need a much better offer from Myer in order to consider a merger, as it continues its search for a replacement for outgoing chief executive Paul Zahra.

 

David Jones chairman Peter Mason has defended his company’s handling of the merger offer, dismissing calls from some investors to stand down.

 

Myer has confirmed it made a merger offer to David Jones late last year, which would have seen the two department stores continue as separate brands, claiming the deal would have generated growth.

 

Napthine stands by SPC Ardmona, but state government won’t provide $50 million in assistance

 

Victorian Premier Denis Napthine says SPC Ardmona still has a strong future, but the state government has ruled out paying the federal government’s half of the $50 million assistance package.

 

The news comes after the federal government rejected funding half of a $50 million assistance package for the Coca Cola Amatil-owned Shepparton factory.

 

“The game changed yesterday. We now need to re-examine where we go from here,” Napthine says.

 

“We would like to work with SPC Ardmona and Coca-Cola Amatil to look at what opportunities there may be to examine plan B, to deliver those economies of scale, those efficiencies those productivity savings to provide ongoing viable food production.

 

“I believe there’s a strong future for Shepparton and Goulburn Valley as a food bowl for Victoria, Australia, the world and particularly the growing Asian economies.”

 

Westfield to trial ‘click and connect’ plan

 

Shopping centre giant Westfield has announced it will trial a new program, called ‘click and connect’, that will allow users to place orders online and collect them from their local shopping centre.

 

The pilot program will initially run in the UK and will be rolled out to Australia if it’s successful.

 

“The pilot is part of our broader strategy to deliver digital solutions to enhance the customer shopping experience and drive sales opportunities for our retailers,” Westfield’s marketing director for Britain and Europe, Myf Ryan, says.

 

 

Overnight

 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down to 15698.8. The Aussie dollar is buying US87.66 cents.

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