A price war between two competing ferry companies servicing the Dutch Wadden island of Terschelling is threatening to isolate the island of Vlieland as well.
Rederij Doeksen is the official ferry company that connects both islands with the mainland. In 2008 islanders of Terschelling, dissatisfied with Doeksen’s service, decided to start their own ferry company, Eigen Veerdienst Terschelling (EVT), which literally means Own Ferry Service Terschelling.
The Dutch government granted Doeksen a monopoly in 2011 (which was to enter into force in 2012) provided that Doeksen would guarantee a service throughout the year and not just in the summer, when tourists flock to the islands. EVT brought a case before the Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal fighting the concession and in the meantime it charged 5 euro for a ticket to Terschelling whereas Doeksen originally charged 25 euro. Doeksen has lowered its rates to 4 euro, but now threatens to cut trips to Vlieland from three times a day to twice a day.
Vlieland’s inhabitants are not happy. Mayor Else Schadd (Labour) told Volkskrant on 15 July: “This is unacceptable. In the future if you want to go to the dentist, you will need to take the entire day off. Islanders who work on the mainland won’t get to their office before ten in the morning. And day trippers who want to visit us in the off-season will have to return home at five o’ clock.”
EVT’s case hinges around whether the Wadden Sea is a real sea or merely a whole lot of water, Veerbootinfo writes. In case of the former European law apparently gives EVT some breathing space.
(Map of the Wadden Sea by OpenStreetMap contributors, some rights reserved. Vlieland and Terschelling are in the top left corner, Vlieland is on the left. The white lines show the ferry routes)
Tags: competition, ferries, free markets, islands, monopolies, Terschelling, Vlieland, Wadden Sea
The merger between two of the giants of the croquette industry has failed, Z24 reports.
Manufacturers Ad van Geloven and Royaan failed to come to an agreement. This means a new lease of life for the famous Van Dobben brand.
As we reported in November last year, two of the largest manufacturers of the deep-fried Dutch delicacy called croquette or kroket were to “form a company with a combined turnover of 246 million euro and almost 1,100 employees”. Ad van Geloven is behind the Mora brand, and Royaan behind Kwekkeboom and Van Dobben.
The Dutch agency that tries to keep competition in markets fair, the NMa, had given its blessing to the merger last month on the condition that the Van Dobben brand would disappear altogether from supermarket freezers.
(Photo by Omid Tavallai, some rights reserved)
Tags: croquettes, deep fried, fast food, kroket, markets, monopolies, NMa, snack food, snacks, Van Dobben
De Telefoongids to fire hundreds of employees
The phone book company that is trying to silence Alexander Klöpping is planning to fire 30% of its 800 employees, Z24 reports.
According to European Directories, the ‘restructuring’ is necessary for a print-to-online transition. The company has also declared that it plans to continue distribution of its paper phone book, despite opposition of Dutch parliament, amongst others.
Klöpping had registered the domain sterftelefoongidssterf.nl (‘die, phone book, die’), which he redirected to the presumed cancellation page of the phone book.
Famous croquette to disappear from supermarket shelves because of anti-monopoly rules
Snack producer Royaan can no longer use its famous brand Van Dobben in supermarkets if it wants to continue its merger with Ad van Geloven (of amongst other the Mora brand).
The Dutch anti-monopoly agency NMa has determined that Royaan must license the brand for supermarket use to another manufacturer during a period of six years according to NOS. After that the brand must be discontinued. The brand may still be used in snack bars; according to NMa there are still enough players in that market to keep it healthy. The intended merger of the snack giants was announced in November 2011.
Krokets or croquettes are a Dutch snack that consists of ragout deep-fried in a breadcrumb jacket.
Experiment with dental free market must be stopped
A recent, nationwide experiment in which dentists could determine their own rates must be stopped the court in The Hague said last Wednesday.
According to Z24, dentists’ rates had risen 6% since the start of the experiment. When Dutch parliament indicated in July it wanted to have the experiment stopped, the association for dentists sued the caretaker minister for public health, but lost. The experiment started in January of this year and was to run for three years.
Tags: business, competition, croquets, croquette, dentists, free markets, kroket, krokets, markets, monopolies, Mora, phone books, shorts, Telefoongids, Van Dobben