Critical Review

Posted on July 7, 2023 by Cheapest Assignment

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Due:                           Before 11pm on 15 June.

Weighting:                This assignment is worth 40% of your final grade

Length:                     2000 word limit (Words after 2200 will not be marked. Footnotes are not included in the word limit as long as they only contain references.

Question 1

Julie recently opened a catering business on the Gold Coast. One night at a bar, over drinks with friends, Julie is introduced to David who works for a catering company, ‘Tasty Bites’, that is also based on the Gold Coast. David asks her which area of the Gold Coast she plans to do business in, and she shrugs and says, ‘Anywhere I can.’

David raises her eyebrows, and then changes the subject.

A few days later, David contacts Julie to see if she’d like join him and some colleagues for lunch. She readily agrees.

Over lunch, David introduces Julie to Amber, the Director of Tasty Bites, Scott, a junior member of ‘Feast Provisions’, and Aletia, the Director of ‘Luscious Spreads’.

As the meal continues, David says to Amber, ‘So, Julie here is planning to do business all over the Gold Coast.’

‘Oh, is she now?’ replies Amber, smirking slightly. ‘I think we might need to chat, Julie.’

Amber proceeds to explain to Julie that there is an established practice on the Gold Coast under which they each only provide catering services to specific geographic areas. She assures Julie that this means they can basically charge what they want and that ‘everyone benefits’. She then tells her the specific geographic area that she suggests Julie stick to.

Julie nods in response. She feels confused, but also flattered to be included in this arrangement.

The following day, she comes to you for advice.

  • Advise Julie as to whether she would risk breaching the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) if she were to participate in Amber’s arrangement.

10/20 marks

  • If the ACCC were to take an interest in this arrangement, what kind of powers do they have available to investigate it further.

4/20 marks

  • If the ACCC were to find that Tasty Bites, Feast Provisions, Luscious Spreads and Amber were in breach of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth), what kind of remedies or penalties might they seek?

6/20 marks

Please refer to specific sections of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) or the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) and any relevant case law in your response.

Question 2

Carolyn runs a cosmetics store in Sydney’s North Shore. A good part of Carolyn’s revenue comes from the popular Miracle Mylk foundation line. It has an extremely loyal customer base who often buy other products when they come into the shop to purchase their foundation.

Earlier this year, a ‘Cosmetics Queens’ opened up in down the road selling cosmetics at low prices. Cosmetics Queens is a large national chain with a 30% share of the Australian cosmetics market.  They have a history of opening shops near to existing small shops and driving them out of business through heavy discounting.

Cosmetics Queens stock all of the Miracle Mylk foundation line and, for the last 3 months, have been selling these products for 35% below RRP and 10% below the price that Carolyn pays for them wholesale (including delivery). Since they opened, Carolyn has seen her sales of these products plummet and it is starting to make her worried about the survival of her business.

  • Advise Carolyn as to her options for challenging Cosmetics Queens’ discounting under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth).

10/20 marks

Carolyn has also contacted Katie, who distributes the Miracle Mylk products, to discuss her concerns about Cosmetics Queens’ discounting. Katie is concerned about the effect this discounting might have on the perceived value of Miracle Mylk products and promises to contact Cosmetics Queens to ask them to sell Miracle Mylk products at the Recommended Retail Price. She also plans to say that Cosmetics Queens will no longer be supplied with Miracle Mylk products if they continue to sell them below wholesale for extended periods of time.

  • Advise Katie as to whether either of these requests to Cosmetics Queens would comply with her legal obligations under the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth).

10/20 marks

Please refer to any relevant (sub)sections of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) and any relevant case law in your response.

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