business news in context, analysis with attitude

From the Financial Times:

"The UK’s leading food industry organisations have called for greater oversight of private equity-owned supermarket chains following recent acquisitions of two of the UK’s leading grocers.

"The Covid-19 pandemic has allowed the big chains to increase their dominance over the groceries market, while suppliers face mounting pressures from labour shortages and rising input costs.

"Ian Wright, the chief executive of the Food and Drink Federation, which represents food manufacturers, said that suppliers needed additional protection from PE owners that were not subjected to the same level of scrutiny as listed companies.

"Speaking after US private equity group Clayton, Dubilier and Rice won a £10bn takeover battle for Wm Morrison, the UK’s fourth-largest supermarket, earlier this month, Wright said there was a strong case for expanding the remit of the supermarkets watchdog, the Groceries Code Adjudicator … Wright said action was needed to protect consumers and the supply chain given that private equity owners look to extract value by selling assets, loading acquisitions with debt and driving down costs."