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jakethesnake
guy who cried about wrestling being real


Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 6311
Location: airstrip one
Market Basket protests  Reply with quote  

This is the kind of stuff that gets it's own chapter in history books. This is what the occupy movement should have been. Don't sleep on it. Join us! There's coffee and donuts and the biggest labor movement in a century.




http://www.npr.org/2014/07/30/336570037/grocery-chain-workers-want-their-ceo-back

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/06/us/grocery-chain-reels-as-employees-and-customers-rally-for-an-ousted-president.html?ref=todayspaper&_r=0

http://fosters.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20140806/GJNEWS_01/140809686

(Video of the Today show coverage)
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10152632174293330
(Better link to today coverage)
http://www.today.com/video/today/55808140#55808140

http://www.wmur.com/money/market-basket-ceos-threaten-to-cut-hours-of-workers/27331214#!bxaDqi

http://www.pri.org/stories/2014-07-31/beloved-grocery-chain-where-immigrants-shop-and-work-now-jeopardy

http://www.people.com/article/thousands/market/basket/employees/protest/firing-of-ceo

edit: moar links
Post Wed Aug 06, 2014 8:15 am
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jakethesnake
guy who cried about wrestling being real


Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 6311
Location: airstrip one
 Reply with quote  

Apparently *all* part time workers were "temporarily" laid off today. I'm estimating about 15,000+ jobs (MB employs 25,000 total)



There is a school supply drive set up for students of MB employees who are having trouble making ends meet.



Is there anybody out there still, or just forum alts talking to each other?
Post Thu Aug 07, 2014 7:28 am
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Captiv8



Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 8547
Location: Third Coast
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I'm fairly certain B. Dolan posted something about this on his facebook a few days ago. It might be worth dropping him a line.

As for folks here, it's probably necessary to explain the conditions that led to this movement. Must people are lazy and don't want to read the links you posted. A synopsis always helps. This is especially true since you seem to have the inside track as an employee or someone closely associated with Market Basket employees.
Post Thu Aug 07, 2014 8:12 am
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jakethesnake
guy who cried about wrestling being real


Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 6311
Location: airstrip one
 Reply with quote  

Summary:

CEO Arthur T. Demoulas ousted by his cousin Arthur S. Demoulas and other shareholders. Arthur T. is known for being a people person, providing benefits to employees, livable wages (starting pay is $12+ per hour), attending funerals, weddings etc. for his employees. He's known to visit any store at any time and takes care of his people.

His cousin Arthur S. took over and recently spent $300m that was earmarked for new stores on shareholder payouts. Then, a few weeks ago, they fired 8 long-time managers (apparently because of their good salaries, most high level management has 30 or 40+ years of experience with company.) this started the protests.

Customers and employees have been boycotting for 3 weeks now and sales are down 90%. This isn't a mom and pop operation and the company is valued at $4.6b with 71 stores and 25k employees (3m customers) in New England.

Fast forward to this week, MB new CEO's held a job fair and pretty much no one showed up. Customers and employees are still boycotting and as of this morning ALL part time employees have been laid off starting Friday 8/8.

How are people not seeing this? It's on national and international news.
Post Thu Aug 07, 2014 8:36 am
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Captiv8



Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 8547
Location: Third Coast
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So the movement is to return this Artie T to CEO and depose Arthur S, is that right? How did the takeover between the two happen in the first place? Are there meetings/roundtables between the employees and Arthur S at present to try and sort this out?

As for myself, I don't really watch the news and I haven't stayed up on my Al Jazeera phone app. This definitely seems like a worthy cause though. $12 an hour is a really great wage for working at a grocery store, and I appreciate any business model that realizes a business functions far better when the employees are treated well.
Post Thu Aug 07, 2014 8:54 am
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jakethesnake
guy who cried about wrestling being real


Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 6311
Location: airstrip one
 Reply with quote  

Shareholders were split on affiliation and one of the holdouts finally switched sides giving Arthur S. control of the company:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/2014/07/24/split-decisions-market-basket/gePggarMOky55aIdQ7VAaO/story.html
Post Thu Aug 07, 2014 9:05 am
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Captiv8



Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 8547
Location: Third Coast
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Bet there was some palm-greasing for that.
Post Thu Aug 07, 2014 10:35 am
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jakethesnake
guy who cried about wrestling being real


Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 6311
Location: airstrip one
 Reply with quote  

Possibly, but I've also heard the story is the widow of the former shareholder just didn't want to be involved any longer and tried to get out. I guess her loyalty wasn't really to anyone but herself, fwiw.

Continuing the story:

http://www.lowellsun.com/breakingnews/ci_26292375/update-all-market-basket-part-timers-laid-off

All part time people (see, tens of thousands) that were laid off today are now told they are NOT laid off. Probably due to the tens of thousands of phone calls to the current CEOs and local government offices. I know the NH office surely doesn't have enough resources to handle this. Could also have been due to store managers emailing the CEOs and full time workers threatening to walk off the job.

Action people, it didn't even take a day to revert the layoffs. Meanwhile, the Mass AG office set up a hotline for employees.

http://www.mass.gov/ago/news-and-updates/press-releases/2014/2014-08-07-market-basket-hotline.html



The governors office in NH also released a statement:

http://www.governor.nh.gov/media/news/2014/pr-2014-08-07-market-basket.htm


Quote:


Governor Hassan’s Statement on Market Basket Layoffs of Part-Time Associates
CONCORD – Governor Maggie Hassan today issued the following statement on reports that beginning next week Market Basket managers are being forced to cut or eliminate hours for part-time workers:

“We estimate nearly 8,000 people work part time at almost 30 Market Basket stores in New Hampshire. Market Basket is important to our state's economy and plays a critical role in our communities for both employees and consumers, providing fair living wages to its employees and affordable products to its customers. I have been heartened by the support I have seen across New Hampshire for this New England tradition and by the value New Hampshire citizens place on their neighbors being treated and paid fairly.

“The reports about these reductions in hours are incredibly troubling, as many of these dedicated employees have been showing up for work and clearly value the company’s past, present and future. New Hampshire Employment Security has worked with store managers to ensure that affected employees know about available resources. Many employees, depending on their hours and individual circumstances, are likely eligible for unemployment benefits. We encourage employees to apply online for unemployment benefits, but I know that nothing can compare to the security of a job.

“While this may be a private business dispute, it is having a significant financial impact on New Hampshire – on our families, consumers, farmers and other vendors – and it will create new costs for the state’s Unemployment Trust Fund. I continue to urge Market Basket leadership to listen to the concerns of their employees and customers and reach a constructive resolution in order to keep these dedicated workers employed and reduce the impact on consumers.”

Market Basket employs nearly 9,500 people in total in New Hampshire.



Mass governor has declined to comment on the situation so far (word is that his wife supports Arthur S.).

Additionally, Hannaford, another chain supermarket in the area, has potentially put in an offer to buyout MB. Rumor is though that the parent company already has ties and history to the current CEOs.

http://wearemarketbasket.com/something-stinks-in-denmark/


Quote:


The connections between Jim Gooch (hired by the BOD), Delhaize (Hannaford) and JP Morgan (investment bank hired by “A” [ASD] shareholders) are many, coincidence? You can connect the dots yourself. However if they were not coincidence the B shareholders (ATD) have not been treated fairly at best and this bidding may have been a sham the whole time at worst.

2006 Jim Gooch hired by Radio Shack as CFO reports directly to Claire Babrowski CEO of Radio Shack. (Gooch later replaces her as CEO)

Claire Babrowski currently serves on the Board of Directors for Delhaize (Hannaford)

Mats Jansson Chairman of the Board of Delhaize (Hannaford) since 2012. Also serves as a member of JP Morgan’s European Advisory Council.

“A” (ASD) Shareholders hire JP Morgan to represent the sale of Market Basket.

If this just seems to not smell right to you use the link below to sign the SEC petition to investigate the Board and “A” shareholders. Market Basket is not a publicly traded company but Delhaize and JP Morgan certainly are.

Post Thu Aug 07, 2014 1:03 pm
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jakethesnake
guy who cried about wrestling being real


Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 6311
Location: airstrip one
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http://www.nhbr.com/August-8-2014/Market-Basket-A-business-case-study-for-decades/



Quote:


Market Basket: A business case study for decades
What your business can learn from Market Basket’s mistakes

BY LIISA RAJALA
Share on facebookShare on twitterShare on emailShare on gmailMore Sharing Services32

Published: 08.07.14
Signs of support for Artie T. Demoulas in the Manchester store.
Signs of support for Artie T. Demoulas in the Manchester store.
PHOTOS BY LIISA RAJALA
Take one look at the Market Basket fiasco – employee protests that have essentially shut down 71 stores in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine – and you’ll get a quick lesson in business communications 101. While Market Basket recently hired O’Neill and Associates, a crisis communications firm in Boston, the damage has been done. Communications specialists and grocery industry experts are in awe, watching a rapidly growing supermarket that was once valued at $7 billion drop in value within a week. The Market Basket saga will be discussed in the communications industry and business schools for years to come.

When former CEO Arthur T. Demoulas was fired in late June, lack of a clear communications strategy was the start of Market Basket’s troubles, says Scott Tranchemontagne, president of Montagne Communications, a strategic communications firm in Manchester.

“They were dropping the ax and trying to bring an end to a long simmering family feud in kind of a hostile takeover, so they should have realized from the get-go this was a crisis communications exercise for them,” says Tranchemontagne.

When forming a communications strategy, a business should ask itself questions like “What is our message going to be?” “Who is our spokesperson?” “Who will be our face?” and “What communication channels will be used?”


Employee made poster of former Market Basket CEO Artie T.
Tranchemontagne said it seemed like Market Basket’s corporate team didn’t put any thought or planning into it. “And as a result, they’ve played into the narrative the opponents have drawn up for them,” he explains. “You need to define the context or define the narrative, define the truth of what’s going on. Because if you don’t define the truth, your opponents will define it for you and the press will define it for you.”

How you say it as important if not more important than what you say. Market Basket’s board of directors has remained behind a curtain, issuing press releases and printing an ad in the Boston Globe.

Tranchemontagne says by not having a clear message or face to the Arthur S. Demoulas side of the family, it reinforces what opponents are saying about them – that they’re corporate, cold, don’t care about employees and are detached from employees and their customers. As are Market Basket’s press statements to tell employees to go back to work versus speaking directly to employees.

The corporate approach is in sharp contrast to how the employees have delivered their message. “You have your store employees standing faithfully on a street corner with homemade signs; that’s real, that’s human, that’s powerful,” says Tranchemontagne. “People can’t help but root for the employees.”

Failing to communicate on a medium your employees, customers and especially your opponents are on is a big mistake as well. While employees and customers are on social media, sharing pictures of dogs with signs showing support for Artie T., Market Basket’s corporate side has been absent there as well. “When you know your opposition will be hammering you on a particular communications channel like social media, you have to play on the same channel,” says Tranchemontagne.

Jayme H. Simões, president of Louis Karno & Company, a Concord-based public relations firm, said Market Basket missed a key point by never explaining from a business standpoint the rationale for replacing the management team and how they would make the stores function better. “Usually when you have a large corporation with thousands of employees you have an HR department that briefs managers and tells them how to speak to the employees in advance,” says Simões, who acknowledges that may have happened.

But calls by NHBR to the Tewksbury, Mass. store and the Manchester store did not suggest any meetings had been held or that the information had gone down the chain to employees. One Manchester employee, who did not want to be named, said she first heard about Artie T.’s firing on the news. “And then we got letters in the mail from the new CEO saying if we boycotted we’d be fired,” she said.

Bob McGeough, a consumer goods professional who worked in the grocery business for 30 years and as a vendor to Market Basket, says Market Basket’s hiring of new temporary co-CEOs Felicia Thornton and James Gooch was meant to intimidate employees. Ultimately new management figured any signs of dissension would fade as employees depended on their job.

“What really turned the tide for the employees is when the eight senior managers were fired…they worked 25 to 40 years. When those people were let go, it just galvanized the stores,” said McGeough, who is also an adjunct business and marketing professor at a number of colleges in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. “I know the store manager for the Tilton store, who had been there for 25 years…[he] locked the door and said ‘I’m gone.’”

Tips from the protesters

While Market Basket’s corporate side has only made poor communication choices, its employees have handled the situation beautifully, winning over customers and politicians.

“It’s completely organic,” says Simões. “The whole thing just happened and happened quickly.”

Simões thinks the fact that Artie T. has mainly stood back, allowing others to speak on his behalf, makes the message even more compelling. “Thousands of employees, customers and politicians [are] speaking out and saying this isn’t right,” he says.

Tranchemontagne agrees, “I’ve never met Artie T., but he sounds like the world’s best boss…ever!”

Getting customers to participate is really eye opening, as they have taped receipts from competitors on Market Basket’s windows. “There’s no ring leader. There’s no crew,” Simões exclaims. “It’s very convincing…You don’t see this in American corporate culture.


Employees protest outside the Manchester store.
How the story ends for Market Basket depends on which option its board of directors chooses. As of press time, the board of directors had yet to make a decision on whether to accept Artie T.’s $3.5 billion offer to buy the company. If Artie T. were to buy the company, many believe this story could be the greatest PR story for Market Basket, and the easiest route to solvency.

“I think it is 100 percent necessary,” says Simões. “I think it would turn from negative to positive overnight. ‘We won this one, the employees won this one, the customers won this one.’ I think it would empower people. I think in 6 to 8 months they would be doing better than they were before.”

Artie T.’s offer, $3.5 billion, is completely reasonable, says McGeough, especially considering the devaluation the past few weeks have caused. While the board of directors said they were still considering offers from six interested companies, McGeough thinks that may be a stretch as the grocer continues to lose value.

“A month ago, I never saw this happening,” McGeough says. “[I thought] Kroger was going to come in and buy the company…but now – now I think Arthur T. has gotten Arthur S. into such a corner, without even trying, where he has two options: sell for $3.5 billion to Arthur T. or keep the company and try to figure out when it will reach a zero in sales.”

If the company were sold to an outsider, McGeough says that any employees that were on the fence about protesting before would leave.

Though, if Artie T. were to buy the company, Market Basket would have to make some changes, as he will not have the full $3.5 billion on hand. Market Basket has never had debt and servicing debt could affect employees, cutting back profit sharing for a few years. McGeough thinks that loyal employees would ride it out. (He doesn’t think it would impact prices, as that’s Market Basket’s competitive advantage.)

But the customers will come back.

“He’ll come out guns blazing,” says McGeough. “This has gotten so much press where a lot of people who were not aware of how great Market basket is, they’ll be walking in the door.”
Post Fri Aug 08, 2014 5:39 am
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jakethesnake
guy who cried about wrestling being real


Joined: 03 Feb 2006
Posts: 6311
Location: airstrip one
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I stopped updating here because there was obviously 0 interest.

But anyway, we fucking won.

http://www.boston.com/business/news/2014/08/27/demoulas-sides-reach-deal/YHVqrKp65XS3DBzJd2PulI/story.html

Over 2 million customers and 25,000 employees got behind a nice guy CEO and stood up for what they believed in, and fucking won. We fought corporate greed, scab drivers, fake acquisitions, threats of termination, actual termination, layoffs of every part time employee, phony job fairs, press releases, everything. Every single thing they could throw at us, and we fucking beat it all and stood our ground and now we have our grocery stores back.

Your kids will read about it some day and I hope the text books get the story right.
Post Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:57 pm
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Captiv8



Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 8547
Location: Third Coast
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I just read the story this morning. It's an impressive victory for the worker, though I wonder if the sale of the remaining 55% of the company would have occurred regardless. I suppose it doesn't matter in the end.
Post Fri Aug 29, 2014 6:12 am
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