PUBLISHER pushes the boundries of certain unrest with Independent NEWSAGENTS!

The News Industry is heading for serious disruption over the coming weeks after it was found out that the Publishers of the SUNDAY POST had increased its selling price to £1.90p, and in doing so decided to also reduce Newsagents terms to an all time low of 19.75%., without having the decency to be honest to its trade partners. Most Newsagents were unaware of the price rise until HNDA announced it through Twitter. Even

Smiths News at Peterborough were unaware, and after checking, had NO written information available for their Newsagent customers! It appears now it was listed on Smiths weekly News Roundup on Friday in very small print, but NO MENTION of a terms reduction!

Many years ago when the Murdock’s and Maxwell’s first cut the trade terms at weekends from the norm of 25.0% one experience HND Newsagent asked the News Industry the question, what happens when it goes below the 20%? and it was fobbed off as some sick news trade joke, but now its happen and the guy concern emphasises the message so strongly to every Newsagent in the Country its time for every Newsagent to fight back, or watch the other publishers copy the SUNDAY POST!

There comes a time when you have to stop and wonder whether its worth the hassle working with these publishers, many including myself find it extremely difficult working with so called partners  who for what ever reason lack the ability to be professional and honest at all times. Another serious pointer they treat us Newsagents with sheer contempt, believing we are second rate citizens unable to work out our terms have been cut yet again. SUNDAY POST Publisher announcement was a classic example of how they respect Newsagents ability, more of a case of robbing the poor to fill their own greedy pockets. The 10p increase was all for their pockets apart from a measly 0.57 of ONE PENCE they kindly gave to us!

So here is the situation, unless the SUNDAY POST Publishers reinstate the previous terms by Saturday July 23rd, all casual sales will be stopped, and HND Newsagents will only carry firm sale orders. We hereby call every Newsagent in the Country to follow HNDA members and only handle firm sale orders,  simply because other publishers are watching our every move and will follow the SUNDAY POST lead and reduce terms if we fail to at last be counted and stick up for ourselves. Remember without us NEWSAGENTS, Publishers and indeed Wholesalers would NEVER survive.

We have been very successful in our fight with the RACING POST Publishers who are losing the income of over 5000 copies a day, due to our remove all casual sales, and the same has to apply with the Sunday POST.  Remember only together (that’s all Newsagents) can we win this battle and have a continuous successful future. There is NO OTHER WAY.

Brian Webb.

HNDA Ltd.

www.hnda.org.uk:  Check us out daily on Twitter @hndanews and @Webbo1Webb:

 

 

Calling Every Newsagent in the Country, Solidarity is required NOW by everyone!

Alarm bells have sounded many times before in the News Trade Industry, but never more so than at this present time!

Over the recent weeks hundreds of Home News Delivery Newsagents have lost big business by losing Racing Post bookmakers accounts through no fault of their own. The Independent HND Newsagents have been delivering newspapers from year “dot”, we have been pushed at times from pillar to post by Publishers and indeed Wholesalers, but this latest “kick in the teeth” is one scenario too far!

As your are aware only recently the RACING POST decided to introduce a poly bag edition to include the Betting Shop paper at a price of £5.20p mainly for the benefit of the thousands of bookmakers around the Country. All was going fine, at last Newsagents were being rewarded for their loyalty over the years by earning good money, but up comes a company (CITIBET) with an offer that Racing Post couldn’t refuse! They were now in charge of deliveries and payments, which indirectly saved the shops paying the weekly accounts from the tills.

In recent weeks Citibet have taken bookmakers accounts away from the Newsagents and employed different organisation to carry out the deliveries, but a few days ago they shot themselves in the foot by approaching MENZIES the NEWS WHOLESALERS, and to everyone connected to the News Industries surprise Menzies decided to jump on the money wagon irrespective who they upset.

MENZIES the News Wholesalers only with the Publishers blessing, have a monopolistic delivered system and have now turn to RETAIL as well as WHOLESALE, delivering direct to book makers, taking out the HND Newsagents by claiming 3rd party contracts. They ruthlessly removed accounts from their Independent HND Newsagents, and have even delivered bookmakers papers BEFORE the Newsagents have received their daily news supply. Other Publishers have been advised of later supplies by MENZIES, caused by the new retail side of their business.

Such is the devastation of this action HNDA management have contacted Racing Post Direct and advised them that unless the situation is reversed by July 1st, NO RACING POST newspapers will be on the shelves from that date, in other words only firm sale issues will be honoured.

HNDA are asking every newsagent in the country to join together over this matter, it will give a signal to every Publisher and Wholesaler that we Independent Newsagents will no longer be trampled on by anyone within the trade. What happens if we don’t all stand together? whose next to stab us in the back? Smith News? We have already had many Smiths News  newsagent customers who have stated they will support this action, SOLIDARITY has NEVER been needed like it is at this moment of time.  Please don’t think this wont affect you, this is a deadly serious situation that could explode further unless we join together and fight these money grabbing individuals. ITS OUR MONEY THAT WE HAVE EARN’T OVER THE YEAR they are taking!

We are also in contact with other publishers demanding they move away from MENZIES Wholesale, the News Industry don’t need cowboys who are totally unprofessional in every aspect of News Delivery.

So once again, calling every Newsagent in the Country lets join forces together from July 1st, NO MORE RACING POSTS on the shelves, only together can we win this battle for a brighter future, do nothing and our days are very much numbered.

 

BRIAN WEBB.

HNDA Ltd.

TIME to be TRUTHFUL for EVERYONE within the NEWS TRADE INDUSTRY!

Never before has anyone within the News Trade been totally honest with the Industry and the players involved, never before has the situation been so serious, that unless every Newsagent joins forces together we could all be out of business sooner rather than later!

The two Wholesalers Smiths News  and Menzies are doing their utmost to destroy every Independent Newsagents business with continuous late delivery that makes Home News Delivery a impossibility to perform, mistakes that defy the logic of common sense, it’s no wonder one wholesaler is trying to sell their twindling business!

Publishers, everyone of them is hell bent on shafting the newsagents, all totally greedy as the new Publishers of  the Richard Desmond titles (Express, and Star) Trinity Mirror who after awarding themselves a £257 THOUSAND pounds a week increase, they showed their total greed by cutting newsagents weekend terms by 2.0% yet again.

HNDA Ltd, contacted the Express boss, expressing grave concern that unless the previous terms are reinstated they will find many casual sales removed from newsagents shelves, but they  replied they didn’t take the decision lightly! but as they pay 0.02% extra terms weekdays than any other Publisher they would NOT be reinstating the original weekend terms. Well they were warned, and now their sales will drop alarmingly.

Now this is the serious part.

Unless all Newsagents join forces together and fight these Publishers and indeed Wholesalers we could all be out on our ear sooner rather than later.  We can no longer allow our so called partners dictate the way forward, NO MORE taking our money, NO MORE terms being CUT, no more LATE PAPERS, ALL parties working TOGETHER etc;

The National Federation Retail Newsagents (NFRN)  have failed miserably over the years by allowing the current barbaric goings on with both Publishers and the Wholesalers, which is why the News Trade is in the position today.

Lets be real, at one time the NFRN had over 30 thousand members (now its half that figure) and being in that strong they still allowed the Publishers to dictate the News Trade Industry, never once have they ever put Publishers and Wholesalers under immense pressure that the membership certainly deserved.

Over the years too many people within the NFRN have been feeding their own pockets instead of representing the paying member that they were elected for, the current new regime has already removed some of the guilty ones, and more could follow.

So we say to every Newsagent “Please don’t think this doesn’t effect you” this effects every Newsagent delivering or selling Newspapers, the news trade can and will be a successful business empire providing we all row the same boat in the same direction.

It’s all  down to every Newsagent, so come and join the Home News Delivery Affiliation and together we will stop all our so called partners dictating  the industry and bleeding Newsagents dry. HNDA will lead the survival for a prosperous future, working together is the only way forward, we will safe guard every members future by fighting for Newsagents rights.

Go to www.hnda.org.uk:

HOW LONG BEFORE NEWSAGENTS pull the PLUG on the NEWS TRADE?

I have been in the News Trade Industry longer than anyone and at this moment of time, and  I have never been so frustrated and annoyed that the trade can continue down the path of self destruction. Three groups on stage, two of them, Publishers and Wholesalers are doing their utmost to kill the trade dead, with their continuous unprofessional performances that leaves Newsagents all over the Country in total disarray.

Publishers fail to understand the importance of early morning deliveries, and Wholesalers have lost the ability to run a professional delivery service, they now often use cheap contractors who drive rust bucket vehicles that continually break down, or simply use the weather as an excuse not to deliver retailers supplies. Even more bizarre, they tried the old trick of still charging the customers a carriage charge payment for a NON delivery, with the excuse they had to open their own warehouses!

A meeting was called into London last week where most publishers, the two wholesalers, and selected HND Newsagents on the way forward of the current SIX WEEK FREE HOME NEWS DELIVERY scheme. After the opening speech by the Guardian boss Richard Furness who was a breath of fresh air to everyone present, but then we were told the meeting was not about Publishers and Wholesalers INABILITY to supply on time! Why was we not informed of this before the day, because rest assure many people wouldn’t have taken the day off to attend.

Now the latest bomb shell!

We received a letter yesterday Sunday April 1st that the publishers of the Express and Star (whether it was Northern Shell or the supposed to be new owners Trinity Mirror) were increasing the prices of their papers as follows; Express Monday to Friday by 5p, and 10p Saturday and Sundays, whilst the Daily Star was going up 10p daily. Not only that the Publisher decided that wasn’t enough so they were reducing Newsagents terms by 2%!!!!!

Now lets take a closer look, the increase in price will bring the Publisher an extra £257 THOUSAND pounds a WEEK, some £13.354 MILLION a YEAR, and still they want some of our profits. This is a publisher showing TOTAL GREED.

LETS GET THE FACTS RIGHT, Here is an example, lets take terms what they were for many, many years before the Murdocks (Sun) and the Maxwells (Mirror) started dipping into our profits. One newsagent gave an example of his loss just on a Saturday, the difference in terms from 26.50% to 21% today shows the Publishers are taking £138 every Saturday of this newsagents profits ALONE, some £7219 a year from ONE newsagent!

The Head of Circulation Paul Goddard says and I quote, I trust you welcome these changes, and I look forward to your continued support! What planet is he on?

Then the Editor -in- Chief  Gary Jones shouted here was a newspaper that stands up for Britain, even if it means we rob our fellow trade partners, and goes on, “here is the tricky bit”, we recognize money is tight and that successive governments have failed to protect your standard of living, but I hope you will agree that this newspaper is good value especially with a posh coffee!!  What planet is this guy on?  value for money, can you imagine the older folk saying “I’m not paying 12 bob (60p) for 56 pages, they can stuff it, I’ll take the MAIL instead, that’s what you call real value for money!!

At the end of the day, either Publishers get REAL and get the grips with the whole procedure of News Trade Industry or we will all be retiring sooner rather than later! ALL GREEDY PUBLISHERS be WARNED,  your days are numbered unless the situation changes overnight.

 

 

News UPDATE:

It was early last year (2017) when HNDA boss called all Publishers and wholesalers to a summit meeting and in conjunction with the NFRN this was held in LONDON last May.

There was an agenda that covered all the current issues surrounding the News Trade Industry, and the only way for this meeting being successful was that we all rowed the same boat

in the same direction together, and the feeling amongst everyone was one of unity.

The HNDA boss spoke at length regarding the topic of voucher and weekend supplement payments, What do you want Publishers asked, and they were told in no uncertain manner

that its been over 30 years since this was first introduced, and this 1p payment for vouchers is embarrassing to everyone, and the same applies to the weekend supplement payment of 2p.

The HNDA boss said both payments should be no less than 5p.

What’s happened since then? absolute nothing, and to rub salt further into the wound, Publishers and the NFRN held another meeting two weeks ago and the HNDA boss was not invited!

So the situation is this, if nothing is done without delay, then the Publishers, Wholesalers and in some respect the NFRN will go along their merry way filling their own pockets with your money,

there’s only one way forward, come and join the HNDA (Home News Delivery Affiliation) and together we can win this battle. they know that, we know that, HNDA are the professional ones who

is led by the man with more experience than anyone within the Industry, and will succeed in making the News Industry successful in the years to come.  See www.hnda.org.uk, or contact the man himself on 0800 999 3227.  Membership is still FREE.

 

PUBLISHERS / WHOLESALERS message to Newsagents: ” SOD you JACK!

Once again the recent meeting between all three parties (Publishers, Wholesalers and Independent Newsagents) was thought to be the new way forward for all three bodies to start rowing the News Trade boat in the same direction! There was certainly hope, but as in so many times in the past  it’s turned out to be  another time when Publishers and Wholesalers simply stuck two fingers up to the Newsagents and said ” Sod you Jack” we’ll carry on our merry ways and if we finally destroy the NEWS Industry we can always use the excuse of newspapers are no longer needed!

The News Trade Industry  will become history whilst we allow Publishers and Wholesalers to continue their unprofessional approach of running a successful empire, NEWSPAPERS will always be needed, BUT ONLY if the papers are on the breakfast table each morning. IT’S THAT SIMPLE.

A few weeks ago a consortium of Publishers produced a SIX WEEK FREE DELIVERY promotion for all new customers who started having the delivered copy. That was classed as a major step forward, and the HNDA boss stood up and the praised the worked involved but strongly emphasised it would fall on its knees if the current mayhem of delivery times continued. All Publishers present agreed and said they were on the case to get the situation rectified! WHAT’S happening? Newspapers are getting later and LATER!

Why are papers so late Newsagents ask the question?  they are now printing six million copies a day LESS than they were 10 years ago and still they are LATE!  They call it the nightly miracle, Newsagents call it the nightly disaster! Wholesalers have made enormous cut backs in warehouses operations and staff have been laid off, again more reasons why RDT times are very rarely met!

WE still have Publishers increasing the retail price and cutting our terms at the same time, without having the “BALLS” to be honest and straight forward, I was always taught there is only one way forward and that’s one of being honest, but in the News Trade that word is never used.  Telegraph boss said” We can word it as we like, we can set the terms as we like, you are still getting an increase so why the fuss?  SIMPLE; you have cut our terms and in plain English a Newsagent delivering a 100 copies a day is losing £2366 in a 12 month period. GET IT?

Smiths News sent letters out to their customers last week stating it had been brought to their attention that they made a mistake SIX MONTHS previous on a Telegraph insert fee, paying 2p a copy when it should have been for nothing, hence they will be claiming that back on Invoice October 21st! I DONT THINK SO, you learn by your mistakes, and if Smith News are that hard up, then the situation is dire. Carriage charge increases of £4.91 due for next month is heading for a disaster because many Newsagents are simply NOT going to be coughing up, UNTIL such time they get their acts together and provide a service which warrants the outrageous delivery fee. ROCKY TIMES AHEAD for PUBLISHERS and WHOLESALERS!  YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

 

Only TOGETHER will NEWSAGENTS survive in the NEWS TRADE INDUSTRY!

With Publishers and Wholesalers now performing daily on a self destruction mode button, the time has arrived when Newsagents have to join forces together to stop the current anarchy that is becoming a daily problem!  Publishers still in a world of their own, totally oblivious to the daily damage of failing to reach wholesalers warehouses on time, causing mayhem to everyone concern, when everybody connected to the Industry is fully aware that for continued success lies simply with the newspapers being on the customers breakfast table.

On two occasions this week, newspapers have been on a re-run from Smiths News at Peterborough, SUN, TIMES, and TELEGRAPH on Thursday Aug 31st, and the EXPRESS and STAR on Saturday September 2nd. This has caused massive problems for the wholesaler, whereby some newsagents were waiting till as late as 10.30am in many cases, this is absolutely diabolical situation, there is NO excuse, just plain stupidity.

However, despite these horrendous problems with the Publishers, its becoming an absolute nightmare trying to work with SMITHS NEWS, whatever has happened to this Company is mind boggling to say the least!

Late deliveries and missing copies are the norm for most newsagents as rationalisation of depots and jobs cuts continue, while the customer service has been a nightmare, and SMITHS NEWS have the audacity to want a carriage charge increase to enable them to rake in an additional £98 grand a week!

The continuous cutbacks is having a serious effect for all concern, and whilst we have many stories of severe problems all over the Country, let’s take Smiths News performances at PETERBOROUGH.

Over the recent months Smiths News have shut down warehouses from all over the region whereby Peterborough now covers newsagents within a 100 mile radius, not only that staff level is at an all time low, and they even have their own staff who have been there for years saying the situation can only get worse. Not only that, Smiths moved the magazine operation away from Peterborough to Birmingham, whereby now their lorries bring all magazines back to Peterborough FOUR days a week!  What’s wrong with that? nothing except two days running last week the magazines failed to arrive on time meaning newsagents were getting their books 24 hours late!

One newsagent last Saturday (August 26th) reported at 7am no Express / Star received, and at 12 noon was told they would not be coming now as all the drivers had gone home! not only that the same day Smiths News had forgotten to supply any papers to their OWN Wisbech shop!!

Saturday Sept 3rd, one newsagent travelled 120 miles round trip to fetch his Express / Star, and when he got back to base Smiths had delivered his other papers but left one BUNDLE of Suns which was supposed to be a TIMES bundle!

The situation at this time is deadly serious, unless the situation changes overnight many newsagents will walk away from the News Trade altogether, no other industry would except this unacceptable unprofessional performances by both Publishers and indeed Wholesalers.

Open letter to Smiths News Mr Rob Drummond.

Dear Mr Drummond.

There comes a time in life when one has to put pen to paper, such time has surely arisen.

With reference to your private and confidential letter received a few days ago (Dear Webbs  (Leverington) ROU !! 217678)( relating to your proposed increase carriage charges, I make the following comments.

The first apathy paragraph is filled with total garbage, just hiding the real facts that Smith News are giving every excuse available to rob their Newsagent customers yet again with outrageous demands of increasing delivery charge by some £255 a year making the overall total near £3000 a year.

Your company had the audacity last year to introduce a so called NEW “Labour Charge” when the previous year you had promised no increases. It was too laughable for words, when has labour NOT been associated to delivery charge? I was under the impression that your vehicles were driven by human beings, apparently not, must have been robots!

The current situation is surely this, your company has been cutting its cloth for far too long, whereby the service to us customers is mostly unsatisfactory and in some cases sheer right appalling,  we have seen Smiths News introduce outside “foreign” contractors who are working in conditions that is not allowed in this country. They ride around in vehicles that are mostly “rust buckets” and breakdowns is the norm in many areas.

Introducing a increase delivery charge from November is totally out of order, we Newsagents cannot be expected to be subjected to a near £3000 a year charge, when in all fairness the service your Company currently provides fails miserably in most cases.

I am personally seeking legal advise, and if need be will be advising members of my other business HNDA ltd NOT to pay the proposed increase fees. I will keep you informed, but in the meantime I suggest you inform the powers to be, for if it means going down the same route as I did over Smiths News Christmas day charge then rest assure Brian Webb will go to the courts yet again.

Yours sincerely,

A very unhappy Newsagent.

Brian Webb.

217678

STOP “licking” Publishers / Wholesalers backsides!

Over the past three weeks the News Trade Industry has emphasized most strongly that its continuing  its slippery slide of self destruction, with one Publisher deciding to increase the prices of 47 local titles and drastically cutting retailers terms without having the “balls” to be honest and upfront.

Johnson Press new Publishers of the I daily paper committed suicide with the local papers, because no newsagent in their right minds will support those titles, especially after JP had the gull to remark they were convinced the Newsagent will support them over these moves. The move emphasized most strongly that Johnson Press had decided to make this move, knowing these titles were already for the scrap heap, and with this move they could blame us Newsagents for not supporting them. They can stick their 10% where the sun doesn’t shine!

Then everyone was cock a hoop  with News UK putting the Sunday Sun up 10p with 21.0% pro rata terms, that’s all very well and appreciated, BUT, some people have short memories so lets not forget the terms they had previously taken away from us!  It’s all very well increasing prices, and yes they are giving these new “fivers” away to try and increase sales, but increasing prices is fine providing the paper remains value for money and at £1.10p some customers will have second thoughts especially with the pagination being reduced by four pages!

Then we have the Daily Mirror trying to shoot themselves in the foot by producing weekend papers which are definitely not worth £1.10 and £1.50 on a Sunday, little wonder they were offering the Sunday Mirror and Sunday People for £2 last week using the voucher in the Saturday paper to save a pound.  Why the Mirror bosses didn’t get involved with the HND newsagents by producing a leaflet prior to any weekend, one will never know, it would certainly sell more newspapers, but then again, that’s why the Industry is in the position it’s in, because working together is not on the agenda with most publishers!

The weekly Trade rag Retail Newsagent this week had a two page spread on Newspapers this week, with the headline “Lets turn over a new leaf”, what retailers should do, what Publishers and Retailers should do together, and what Publishers and Retailers should do individually!

That’s all very well, but its not rocket science what the problem has been and still remains after all these years. It was steering everyone in the face some three weeks ago when a HND Newsagent reported in RN that he had been receiving his supplies by 3am each morning, and in the last 12 months he had over 500 new customers! EASY!

The problems remain with our dear Publishers and Wholesalers producing a delivery service that will benefit everyone within the Industry, we Newsagents have been falling over backwards to work with Publishers and the two wholesalers, but all the time we constantly get stabbed in the back.

News UK boss states that 44.% of news is sold by 11am, this guy needs some help, or is his figures based on a few selected shops? HND is still and will remain so the biggest selling point for Publishers, even more so when Publishers and wholesalers finally get their acts together with early morning delivery on a regular basis.

Smiths News have been criticized over the past years for operating their deliveries with contactors who employ under paid foreign staff driving around in old rust bucket vehicles that leads to problems of breakdowns. Last week three of these vehicles broke down, and then the Contractor walked away leaving the Peterborough branch in a right old mess, which left Smiths high and dry, with no drivers or vehicles. Oh happy days!!

 

 

 

Publishers, Wholesalers, NFRN, and HNDA all around the same table!

Tuesday May 23rd 2017 may eventually go down into the News Trade Industry history books, as the day when all three parties joined together to change the current delivery mechanism to benefit everyone!

IN his opening speech HNDA boss Brian Webb, emphasised so strongly that four years ago he formed a new organisation solely for HND entrepreneurs who despite everything within the trade remain the most important people attached to home news delivery. The days of any HNDA newsagent losing money through Publishers failing to reach wholesaler destinations on time is over, Webb emphasised most strongly that Publishers are now printing some SEVEN MILLION copies a day LESS now than they were TEN years ago, there are no excuses,  cut off times have to be met EVERYDAY, no more Editors wanting extra minutes, the HND copies have to be on the breakfast tables each day. Some 1563 Re-Runs this year already is an improvement said the meeting! there shouldn’t be any re-runs!

HNDA boss went on to inform publishers that from July 1st all re-runs would cost them money, our members have had enough, there are too many people walking away from the News Industry totally had a “gut full”, none more so than the guy down South who had over 300 plus HND customers and decided two weeks ago, that’s it, I cant work with these unprofessional people any more, and just stopped delivering over night! The Industry cannot afford to lose these firm sale orders.

Webb emphasised a number of reasons why on time deliveries could be achieved, one publisher stated he was spending £600 a night recently with extra vehicles after one particular area had FOUR RE-RUNS in EIGHT DAYS, so they saw the problem, done something to eliminate the anger and costs involved. When asked by a publishers what happens when the Europa Football match final tomorrow night goes  into extra time and penalties, do we hang on production or print the normal time?  PRINT to NORMAL TIME! How about June 8th Election he said, and the answer was the same, PRINT to NORMAL TIME!

After two hours of talking, we then heard the HNDA boss ask the room a question. Holding up a Smiths News Invoice from 1992 who can tell me what’s the same 25 years on?  before anyone had the chance to let their brains work overtime, Webb said vouchers payment of 1p, remains. weekend supplements 2p remains twenty five years done the road, one publisher asked what do you want? to which the HNDA boss said payment in line with your newspapers prices, this gentleman’s Saturday paper is now £1.00, and at the time 25 years ago it was 30p. We await to see the outcome, but they a fully aware the situation needs addressing URGENTLY.

Hopefully the meeting was a success, only improved results will determined whether it was a waste of time or not, one thing is for sure, the HNDA boss was the only person in the room who was not being paid wages / expenses for the days work, it certainly shows the dedication and commitment of one person who is totally obsessed  to go to whatever lengths needed for the benefit of every HNDA member.

WATCH THIS SPACE!