ABC’s retail business “increasingly unviable”

ABC emporiumThe Australian Broadcasting Commission’s commercial arm has proposed an exit from the retail business, namely the ABC Shop Online and ABC Centres.

The broadcaster noted that DVDs, music, books, toys and other merchandise would remain available through approved retailers both online and in stores around Australia.

“ABC Shop Online and the ABC Centres are an important part of the ABC’s commercial operations, and these decisions are never taken lightly,” ABC Commercial general manager Andrew Lambert said.

“This proposal directly responds to the changing market, in particular consumers’ shift to digital delivery of audio and visual content. Coupled with the intensifying global competition affecting the entire retail sector, the resulting decline in physical sales means the retail business is becoming increasingly unviable.”

It is believed the proposal will result in up to 16 redundancies; consultation with employees and union representatives began on August 15.

ABC Retail is part of ABC Commercial, the revenue-generating division of the ABC. ABC Commercial contributes all of its profits to content producers at the ABC and receives no taxpayer funding.

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