Proposals for an alternative newspaper and magazine distribution service for independent retailers will be presented to the Office of Fair Trading next month.
News co-ordinator for the Association of Convenience Stores, John Lennon, said: “We have put together an operational spec to submit to the OFT on December 13.”
The move follows meetings between the OFT and the news wing of the ACS earlier this year.
It is designed to challenge the current regional wholesaler monopoly in the newstrade, which is currently worth £2.2bn per year.
Lennon said the monopoly meant the wholesalers could command terms that were not in the best interests of retailers.
He added that it also enabled them to offer a one-size-fits-all-service that was not tailored to the needs of individual retailers.
Associated with that was the fact that many retailers were being forced to accept titles they could not sell and were forced to return at their own cost.
“A total of 63 million monthly magazines are sent out to retailers every month and half of these are returned unsold,” said Lennon
“We’re looking at setting up a complementary supply chain to introduce the threat of competition, forcing wholesalers to pull their socks up and improve the supply chain.”