I’m the Co-op

Pier_Luigi_Bersani.jpg

After the stories of Antonveneta, of Unipol, of Banca Popolare Italiana, of Fazio, of Consorte, of Gnutti, of Ricucci, of Fiorani, of the defence of the quality of being Italian and an affair in which the only ones not to go to prison are the politicians.
After all this we are right back at the beginning with the defence of the sacred earth of the mother country. It appears that Caprotti of Esselunga wants to sell to the English multinational, Tesco. The Co-op doesn’t agree. The Co-op is you and also Fassino, Bersani and D’Alema. It is the strongbox of the votes of the new Italian socialists: the DS.
Esselunga has purchased 2 pages in today’s Corriere della Sera. There are some interesting declarations from the last few years. In spite of Bersani’s liberalization.

“They tell me that Caprotti wants to sell. Beware not to lose Esselunga. It has to remain in Italian hands. Have I been understood?”
Cesare Geronzi

“ … I believe that the administrative system also has possible levers. Just as the Government has. It’s certain that no one enters a market without respecting its political and economic ruling class.”
Pierluigi Bersani

“…there are still the Co-ops and there’s still Esselunga… the government can put them together … it can have a policy to keep them together…”
Romano Prodi

Let Caprotti sell to Tesco. Let’s have retail prices in Italy at the level they are in other European countries.
Let’s import competition. Let’s avoid the family outings each weekend to France or Switzerland to buy products at half of half the price.
Let the government take care of prices and not Esselunga. Let it observe that all the on line distribution (the future) is already in the hands of foreigners.

PS: The Fruttagel factory of Senigallia with 200 employees, is closing. Let the Co-op intervene if it wants to and if it can.

Posted by Beppe Grillo at 11:33 AM in | Comments (5)
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Hello there, and here we are again do I have to remind you that we are in Italy and although I am proud of being Italian I am also sorry to see the in-competency of our Politician without a cause. Here in Italy we do have (Fact) one of the highest rate of taxation and mom and pap shop knows it very well, forcing little shop out of the market while giving the shopper very little back in the form of protection, security (See Lira to Euro exchange), price gouging excess (See Baby Milk in powder case), quality (See latest Mozzarella di Bufala Napoli) and on and on. The problem I see is not whether Tesco will buy Esselunga or not, what worries me is the fact that if the purchase will make sence it will happen any how, whether they like or not, but instead the fact that after these buffoon Politicians will mingle with it and will profit from it (With votes for them plus some under the table deal) we will be left with the dire consequences of it.
We will end-up with high prices (Like any other Monopoly in Italy, Telecom (Ex SIP), Gasoline, Natural Gas (Eni), Alitalia (221 Mil loss in 3 month), Electricity (Enel), Banks Train (FSI good as bankrupt) etc etc. Ladies and gentleman all the above Monopoly are under the control of the Government and do you really think they are running these businesses for the people by the people and for the people? Think again what I see is only very bad Business Management and to the make the matter worst with our money while they say they do it to protect us. Now the latest is in the Banking business, San Paolo IMI and Banca Intesa have formed a the second Banking group in Italy, good for us everybody would think, not so fast let the Italian be Italians these two bank have merged although they maintain two separate and distinct CDA (Comitato Di Amministrazione) therefore resulting with no changes at the top and therefore doubling the Management (Reason to combine is redundancy? Same thing with Banca di Lodi and Popolari) in this manner they have reduce manpower requirement (Working people) doubling Management (Their own job is safe) while doubling the market reach for their product. Where are our politicians and Consob and Banca D’Italia are they sleeping at the while the Bank fill their pocket with profits while the service to the clientele is the one we always had and still have (I don’t have to remind you that in Italy Banks close for three hours in the middle of the day, open for one hour in the afternoon, Saturday do not work, direct check deposit is non existing, average checking account cost is approx. 500 euros, and the service suck at best!). This is just one example of the so called Market Protection our politicians are concerned with and to be honest I rather let the market do what it wants rather than pay at the end these incompetent Politicians fiddle with the market.
This is my take on it, while thanking for the opportunity I will keep my eyes open to any reasonable reply.
Thanks again

Posted by: Giacomo Chiametti | November 17, 2006 01:38 PM


Unfortunately you cannot turn things back...
The fact is that the larger you buy the better discount you get and in principal this discount should be given to the consumer.
That was the original idea behind the first super markets and that's why they were so succesful in the first place.
However, although nothing can be done to reverse that, there are lots of things that could be done by the State to protect workers and consumers even if Esselunga were to be sold to Tesco.

To begin with, certain conditions could be required before the final sale was affected.
Protection of existing jobs, quality controls could be imposed on products and high standards requested.
Selling products of Italian manufacturers/producers in say a % of 70-30, thus assuring that no foreign imports would be increased, and Italians would not loose their source of income.
These are only a few suggestions, I am sure the Government could think of many more..!!

In this way we could find out two things:
1) If the Government is really honest and worried, it will make these proposals, if not they are lying to the Italian people and it's not only Caprotti who wants to sell but they do to...

2) If Tesco agrees to these proposals then Italy is still a profitable market and Italians have nothing to worry about.

Posted by: paola filinesi | November 8, 2006 11:41 PM


...so you think that Tesco will give you lower prices in Italy? Think again. I visit Italy regularly, and I would die to have such a choice of regional produce, and lower prices than in the UK. Tesco is becoming a monopoly and exerts too much control over the producers, resulting in poor choice and mediocre quality. They will always say that they are giving the customer what he wants. I don't know what I want, but I like it when I find it, and I more often find it in independent stores.
Tesco uses dubious marketing so we convince ourselves we are getting a bargain. And yes, I regularly shop in Tesco, but I wish I didn't

Posted by: John Shelton | November 8, 2006 03:24 PM


Marcia, it seems that Beppe can never do anything right according to you,we like it or not Tesco is going to buy in Italy,Beppe cannot stop that,but at least he coulde try, and he is doing this, to tell people of what is happening, the power is all in people hands,if nobody buy at Tesco,Tesco wan't last long in Italy.

Posted by: evakulnura | November 6, 2006 03:57 AM


By all means let have competitive prices in Italy but Tesco is not the answer. Tesco is ruining the small business in UK by the hyper markets etc. You cannot find the corner shop that existed in UK. The small businesses have joined up and with the environmentalists are fighting the culture of Tesco hyper/Supermarkets. The small businesses cannot cope with the high bulk buying of the big ugly giants. You have not done your research well. I am sure Veltroni will be pushing Tesco like no other but Sig Grillo with his “values” what happened?

Do you want to go from one European state to the next and see no change?

The sheer danger for consumer to have one big giant control prices!

Correct me but wasn’t Sig. Grillo on the side of the hard working , tradition & environmental respecting individuals who want to retain the cultural aspect and character of his or her Borgo/village/town/city/state?

And you think having Tesco will make price competitive in Italy? It is the same farmer selling his product to one giant. Pray enlighten me?

Posted by: Marcia Visanji | November 5, 2006 07:49 PM


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