Changing of the racks

racks2010aWhen Metro was launched in the Netherlands in 1999, the company secured an exclusive contract with Dutch railways NS, a contract that was renewed recently. Competitor Spits sued Metro and NS for violating competition law, but the Competition Authority ruled that Spits had many other alternatives to distribute free dailies.

Spits then started hand distribution in major train stations with the result that people often already had a free paper handed out before they encountered the Metro racks. Metro employed hand distributors as well for some major train stations.

When a third competitor, De Pers, started in 2007, Metro changed its policy and allowed racks of De Pers in train stations for a compensation in money (picture left).

racks2010De Pers, however, ended national distribution in 2009, meaning that many train stations again only had racks of Metro. The places abandoned by De Pers are now being taken over by Spits (picture right), after more than 10 years now allowed inside train stations.

At the end of 2009, however, De Pers decided again to expand distribution after a deal with regional publisher Wegener. But with many of the abandoned spaces being now occupied by Spits, it is De Pers now that has to switch to hand distribution, a not often employed way of distribution by the paper.

One Response to “Changing of the racks”

  1. Newspaper Innovation » Blog Archive » New boxes for Dutch free dailies Says:

    [...] all free dailies have their own ‘branded’ newspaper boxes and racks to distribute [...]