Hardly normal competitiveness

Hardly normal competitiveness

Gerry Harvey and the good people at Harvey Norman are up on the Net again, but despite lots of bells, whistles and flash[ing] technology, the bricks and mortar retail juggernaut still just doesn't seem to get the point about having a presence online.

Last week its prime feature on the Web site was a pointer to its current runout software sale happening - wait for it - at your nearest Harvey Norman store.

Australia's IT retail success story of the late 20th century is still rolling along on its `physical' expansion plans while apparently not taking the Internet threat too seriously.

Fortunately, Gerry's growth over the last three years has been so phenomenal that it is just a matter of selling a few racehorses to pay for the million dollar Web development that is needed to meet predicted future trends.

In a Magic Millions era that definitely still appears to be looking up for Gerry Baby, he is faced with the first serious threat to his to-date so-successful franchise model. Just how he sustains the model in the Internet-centric world we have all been promised is coming, but are yet to see.

One thing is for sure - the extremely positive moves by Coles Myer, the size retailer that Harvey wants to be, is going to make or break e-tailing in this country.

Tabloid is tipping that the purchase of Harris Technology and its online methodologies is looking more and more like the buy of the year for Dennis Eck and the CM boys that have been making money for shareholders longer than Gerry has been alive. Sharpen up Harveys or watch as the wheels fall off your bandwagon!

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