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Progressive winning supermarket war

Date of Release: 
Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A suggestion that Progressive Enterprises is winning the supermarket wars.

Its competitor Foodstuffs, will make more than 100 employees from their lower North Island bases redundant resulting in cost savings of more than $4 million.

National Distribution Union general secretary Robert Reid says Progressive isn't having the same problems post the recession.

"We are also the union in Progressive and all we see at the moment in that company is expansion of their operations right throughout New Zealand," he told Newstalk ZB.

Robert Reid says the supermarket wars are quite brutally fought between the two main chains. None of the NDU's members are affected in the recent Foodstuffs layoffs.

Foodstuffs Wellington region CEO Craig Wilson says the redundancies will give the company more head room to compete even more vigorously. He says it's been a hard slog for its co-op members who own their stores, so it had to review internal costs.

Mr Wilson says the market has been very slow recovering from the recent downturn.

Foodstuffs owns Pak 'n' Save, New World and Four Square, while Progressive Enterprises owns the Foodtown, Countdown and Woolworths chains.

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