More on WholeFoods and buyout battle

June 26, 2007

I commented recently about Whole Foods and their effort to buy out a competitors which would leave them largely standing alone in the organic food retail space nationally. Seems the FTC has some concerns about that kind of concentration–as is their job to do. I had some concerns about the impact on Whole Foods’ reputation given the adverse opinion most of the world has about monopolies or near monopolies (or even ones that remotely look like they might be).

John Mackey, Whole Foods’ CEO doesn’t think much of the FTC concerns about his plan, and made that very clear on his blog. This article highlights the fray and the potential impact of Mackey’s shall I say strong criticism of the FTC. What makes this interesting is again the intersection of blogging–in this case CEO blogging–on the business environment. And the clash of cultures that exist. Government regulators want you to play nice with them or else they will use the only power they really have–the power to say “no”–against you. Get pissy with them and they have ways of getting back. Bloggers and blog readers of course love the open, straightforward, highly personal, intensely real response of Mackey. Wise? From a blogger perspective, anything less would be unwise? From a business success standpoint–we’ll see.

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