Dear Dave and Alan: We wish you the best of luck in your new roles. We’re sure that just about everyone is offering you their opinion right now both publicly and privately, so we will refrain from that except to offer you some clues about where to look for some of the answers.

Product Chain is a sales agency that has traded with Tesco for over 20 years, representing several brands. In the last few years we have experienced a decline in Tesco’s financial management. It would appear that there is a disconnect between your commercial agreements and your financial processes.

We are not invoiced for money owed to Tesco for agreed promotions etc and we spend a considerable amount of time and resource trying to get Tesco to invoice us for these accrued sums. Despite our efforts, the situation is rarely resolved in a timely way, if at all.

We are a small supplier and currently hold over £20k to cover past promotions for one category alone. We are just one supplier amongst thousands; how many do you think may be in the same situation? It’s one thing to overstate your earnings, it’s another to actually collect the money owed to you.

Alastair Chrystal, managing director, Product Chain