ACCC Chair Rod Sims said at first glance, Bunnings taking over a major tile retailer appears concerning, but the investigation found that Bunnings is not a strong competitor in tile sales.
“This is not a case of a close competitor buying up its rival. However, [this decision] should not be read as any indication that the ACCC will reach the same conclusion in relation to future possible acquisitions by Bunnings,” Mr Sims said.
According to Mr Sims, Bunnings does not operate in the tile market on the same scale as Beaumont Tiles, so they are not considered rivals. While Bunnings sells small volumes of tiles to DIY customers, Beaumont is a specialist retailer that offers advice and referrals to tilers and larger builders, usually delivering a large number of tiles directly to work sites, he said.
Bunnings’ Managing Director Michael Schneider welcomed the decision, saying that the company will finalise the transaction over the coming weeks.
“Beaumont Tiles is a well-run business that operates in a large, competitive category that has strong growth prospects. The acquisition represents an opportunity to build on the success of the Beaumont Tiles business and invest in its future growth. “The current management team will remain in place and Beaumont Tiles will continue to be based in Adelaide and we can’t wait to welcome the team to the Bunnings family,” Mr Schneider said.
Beaumont Tiles Executive Chairman, Bob Beaumont, will retire following the acquisition, bringing his 53-year career to an end. The tile specialist operates 115 locations across Australia.