Friday 30 November 2018

The Best Christmas Ads for 2018

Thanks to Kris Robinson for sending us the Bouygues Ad.

Have Your Say - click here.

Thursday 29 November 2018

Traders Announced For Committee of Trustees

At Tuesday night’s CoM Council Meeting four traders were confirmed as members of the new high level Committee of Trustees.

They are - Fleur Studd (Market Lane Coffee), Carl Greco (Bratwurst Shop & Co), Rocco Tripodi (Market Juice) and George Milonas (George the Fishmonger).

These traders will join community members, councillors, and board members as “the highest source of strategic advice to Council on both the $250 million renewal program and the strategic operations of the market.”

Have Your Say – click here.

29/11/2018 19:24:33 Trader Trustees "Two members representing the Deli area of 30 traders ,all traders representing the food areas with lockup shops and yet no General Merchandise representation. The whole board has been left with a big hole."
Thanks for your input - Ed.

29/11/2018 21:15:22       Committee of Trustees      "Firstly, I personally would like to applaud this initiative where finally all stakeholders are sitting at the one table with the opportunity to engage and discuss all things QVM. This is potentially a great step forward in ensuring that there is across the board and real time awareness on the part of the relevant decision makers of  the challenges facing our Market and as a result the possibility of developing some concrete strategies around meeting and overcoming at least some of these challenges.
Having said that, the disappointment / frustration / anger in seeing that yet once again the non food area of the Market, who form between 60-70% of businesses at the Market, have no seat at that table is utterly exasperating."
Thanks for your comments - Ed.

30/11/2018 12:36:47 One comment omitted due trolling – Ed.
Trolling – (verb), as it relates to internet, is the deliberate act, (by a Troll – noun or adjective), of making random unsolicited and/or controversial comments on various internet forums with the intent to provoke an emotional knee jerk reaction from unsuspecting readers to engage in a fight or argument.  

Tuesday 27 November 2018

Peoples Panel Report Out

We noted in Heard Under The Sheds this week that the report by 40 or so traders, customers, business people, and other interested parties was hopefully to be published and that has now happened. Interestingly it includes a minority report that takes the discussion a little deeper. 

The People’s Panel was asked to help shape the design and location of critical market infrastructure including customer facilities, car parking, and trader requirements such as storage, delivery areas and waste management.

Here is the link - QVM Peoples Panel Final Report

Did the report come up with useful suggestions? Were such a diverse group of participants able to consider the realities of market trading? Are the suggestions practical? Can we expect some of these ideas to be incorporated in future planning?

We suggest you read the report. It has some interesting stuff and will be considered by Council at the Future Melbourne Committee meeting on 10th December.

Have Your Say - click here.

Sunday 25 November 2018

Heard Under The Sheds – 25/11/2018

Market service centenary celebration - The Mark family are celebrating 100 years of R&H Hire Box Storage service to their customers at QVM. The service was originally established 2 weeks after the end of World War 1.

Slow start to Summer Night Market – traders reported a slow start to the Wednesday night market event with rainy conditions not helping and the Noodle Night Market at Birrarung Marr creating a clash of events. There were some changes to last year with the main stage area being moved from the Peel St. end of the market because of new noise restrictions. Participants will be looking forward to the following Wednesdays for a change of fortune.

Etsy market looks to success – the weekend Etsy craft market at the top of C Shed seemed to be well attended with at least one participant reporting bumper sales. Etsy have their own inbuilt social media following which no doubt helped.

You would never guess which countries give one of our traders his best source of international customers – Kuwait and New Caledonia. Kuwait, because students on short stays here just love our city and take home memories of Melbourne, and New Caledonia since Australian airlines opened up direct flights to Melbourne.

No minute of silence – a few traders have now mentioned the absence of a minutes silence on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month to celebrate Remembrance Day, the end of World War 1. In the recent past the market PA would announce a minutes silence at the appropriate time. With Remembrance services around the country breaking attendance records it seems a little strange that QVM would miss the occasion.
PS - Oops, we got this wrong. We have been advised that a minutes silence was observed on 11th November although clearly the PA system is not working adequately in a number of areas. The complaints came from K Shed, Rear K Shed and String Bean Alley. 
And just for the record the following was read out - 
"Good Morning and welcome to Queen Victoria Market.  Today, on the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month, we commemorate Remembrance day. We will observe a minutes’ silence to remember those who have served and sacrificed their lives in all wars and armed conflicts past and present. On the 100th anniversary of Remembrance Day, on behalf of QVM traders and management, please join us in a minutes’ silence."
"They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old, age shall not weary them nor the years condemn, at the going down of the sun and in the morning we will remember them. Lest we Forget. Thank you for your attention and enjoy the rest of your day here at Queen Victoria Market.”

Trader gift buying – a trader has suggested that traders should do all their Christmas shopping within the market and perhaps we could all offer discounts to our neighbours. Mino from JLP would like to start the ball rolling with a minimum 20% off to traders on all his fine leather goods.

A trader arrived at work early one day this week to find a light which normally assisted while she set up their stall had stopped working. She sent a message to facilities and within a few minutes an electrician arrived to replace the globes. It was a coincidence, but for a moment our trader thought this was responding to trader requests on steroids.

People’s Panel Report – Melbourne newspapers seem to have an idea of the outcome of the QVM People’s Panel although the full report has not yet been made publicly available. Apparently some good work was done by the 40 or so participants so we look forward to reading the full report when, and if, it becomes available.

One trader says that the last 2 weeks of November are often his best trading time of the year with a bit of a slip in sales closer to Christmas as alternative shopping options like shopping centres get into full gear. That surge hasn’t happened so far in November and he is wondering what surprises 2018 Christmas trading will bring.

Articles Worth A Read - 25/11/2018

Australians Are The Wealthiest People In The World -

ATO, Bills and Paperwork Create Havoc for Small Business -

Warren Buffet Was Right About Bitcoin -

Ikea Announce Radical Changes -

The Cost Of E-Commerce  -

Re-inventing The Classic Food Hall -

New Stall Cancellation Phone Number

The old telephone number for cancelling your stall is no longer your best option. It is now linked to the Visitor Centre and your message may not get through in time.

Here is the preferred number for stall cancellations – 

0418 222 119

It is a mobile number, and the bonus is that you don’t actually have to call – you can text your cancellation and the details are recorded for future reference.

Don’t forget to give full details of your cancellation and if you have storage boxes you need to cancel them separately with your box hire operator.

Latest Retail News – 25/11/2018

Latest Retail News – 25/11/2018
1. Myer confirms 4.8% first quarter sales drop.
2. ARA pushes to allow shop staff to conduct bag inspections instead of licensed security guards.
3. Dymocks opens new store at Highpoint.
4. Reject Shop receives takeover offer.
5. Sporting goods retailer, Decathlon, to open 5 new stores in Victoria in coming weeks.
6. Instagram launches new shopping features.
7. Amazon re-opens its US site to Australians.
8. Ikea to cut 7500 jobs worldwide.
9. GAP looks to close hundreds of stores.
10. Aldi remains Australia’s most trusted brand.
11. Kathmandu reports strong first quarter sales.
12. Woolworths introduces Black Friday supermarket deals.

QVM In The News - 25/11/2018

A plan by Melbourne City Council to dig beneath heritage sheds at the Queen Victoria Market – to create an underground parking lot and a trader ...
In the years since, they've opened locations in Carlton, in the CBD, at South Melbourne market, and a satellite cafe within the deli area of Queen Vic ...
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Winter is well and truly over for another year, but the activities of the season are still coming to town! Queen Victoria Market and Air Canada are ...
Dana recommends Queen Victoria Market. This isn't a tourist-driven attraction. It officially opened in 1878, but it was unofficially operating before then.

Sunday 18 November 2018

Heard Under The Sheds – 18/11/2018

A few traders are talking about market promotion and it is in a positive light with examples including Bruce Goose appearing on a freeway billboard, Iris featuring in a half page advertisement in the citywide Where Magazine, George Milonas on the front cover of that magazine, an extra $500,000 to be spent on pre-Christmas promotion, and the arrival of a family friendly summer ice rink in C Shed – all positive measures.

One trader commented that the new Visitor Centre is a great example of how good the humble shipping container can look.

A trader suggests that one way to assist traders through the current sales downturn is to offer a rent free day each week. He points out that new leases and renewals in shopping centres are being negotiated at reduced rents in recognition of tough times. He also suggests that 5 day traders would be most deserving of the initiative due to their commitment to QVM and their level of exposure to poor sales.

A saying that caught the eye of one of our regular contributors – “Revenue is vanity, profit is sanity, cash is reality.”

Prompt action from security staff. A big tick from Ronnie in String Bean Alley when a young boy fell and injured himself on Sunday. Ronnie rang security and within a few minutes staff turned up with their first aid kit. Their supervisor followed up with a call to Ronnie a little time later to check that all was in order. Well done to all involved.

Great Expectations – the Summer night Market kicks off next Wednesday and just what it will bring in the current retail climate is a subject of much anticipation and speculation.

Christmas Eve Trading – traders are being asked to express their interest in trading on the special Monday before Christmas, and they are asking a few questions. Will the upper market be curated in C,D, and E sheds or the J-M option? What do you think should happen?

Online business – one trader reports that his online orders have kicked off early this year while stall business remains flat in the lead-up to Christmas.

Articles Worth A Read – 18/11/2018

Articles Worth A Read – 18/11/2018

Australian Households Spending Shift Casts Dire Warning For Retail -

Latest Retail News – 18/11/2018

Latest Retail News – 18/11/2018
1. Walmart beats Amazon in online groceries.
2. Nick Abboud named CEO of Cheap As Chips.
3. Sydney Fish Market to be modernised. – (more here)
4. 85,000 retail jobs disappear from Britain’s high streets in first 9 months of the year.
5. Woolworths to sell its fuel business for $1.7b.
6. Australians expected to spend $51b in Christmas holiday period.
7. Harrolds boutique to close at Crown.
8. Woolworths launches Christmas collectibles promotion.
9. Coles opens its first new small format store in Melbourne.
10. Myer launches “Naughty or Nice” campaign.
11. Roger David attracts no buyers – will close by Christmas.
12. Click Frenzy site crashes – sale extended.
13. Myer issues trading halt following rumoured sales decline.
14. Cotton On to open first New York store in 2019.
15. Walmart reports 43% jump in e-commerce sales. 

QVM In The News - 18/11/2018

The council-owned Queen Victoria Market is taking on Heritage Victoria again, this time bidding to install 12 more shipping containers to operate as ...
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Queen Victoria Market has become a major Melbourne landmark, and at about seven hectares is the largest open air market in the Southern ...
Open during the first three weeks of summer, the Air Canada Ice Rink will be the centrepiece of the market's always excellent Christmas celebrations.
Google Plus Facebook Twitter Flag as irrelevant
Work will be carried out at nine sites including Bourke St Mall, Federation Square, Southbank Promenade and Queen Victoria Market. It comes as 
Australia's southern State of Victoria is a multi-cultural Rubik's Cube of ... paradise, shopaholics can frolic at the sprawling Queen Victoria Market.

Tuesday 13 November 2018

Making A Point On Social media

Sometimes a simple photo is the best way of making a point on social media sites and the photo above begs the question - Who is more likely to absorb the moment in this photo?

And then there was this clever post - 

and maybe this could be added for QVM content - 

Summer Ice Skating Rink To Liven Up C Shed For Christmas

In a major move, QVM have announced a partnership with Air Canada to install Melbourne's first outdoor summer ice rink under the sheds at the top of C Shed on Peel St.

"The rink will host hourly skating sessions, with all the kit available to hire, from skates and helmets to knee pads. What's more, the fun continues off the ice, with a plethora of tasty rink-side offerings. Think fairy floss, buttery popcorn, maple syrup ice cream from Market stalwart Geloso Gelateria, and of course, plenty of poutine — Canada's famed dish of French fries, cheese curds and gravy.

The Air Canada Ice Rink will open market days (Tuesdays and Thursdays through Sundays), as well as Wednesday nights to coincide with the Summer Night Market season."

This promotion will operate from 1/12/2018 to 24/12/2018 and looks like a fun family attraction for our market.

Have Your Say - click here.

Sunday 11 November 2018

Heard Under The Sheds - 11/11/2018

Peoples Panel - one participant has described the process as a bit like dancing at theTrader Ball on Monday night - one step forward, one step back, then turn yourself around. With so many participants, including some with very little knowledge of the market, this has been a long process. But the decision to extend deliberations for two more sessions bodes well for their commitment and the possibility of some useful outcomes.

Peoples Panel 2 - another participant suggested that Heritage Victoria were one of the few groups to make sense at the Panel. Although his colleague pointed out that when you only have to say yes or no, are not obliged to provide corrective action, and have no responsibility for achieving business outcomes, it is very easy to sound impressive. The ones trying to delve into an uncertain future, experiment, trial, develop strategies and create responses to retail decline have a much harder job.

Visitor Centre - there was consternation from a number of traders at the noise, smell, and distraction created  during trading hours by work on the new Visitor Centre at the bottom of L Shed. QVM Management would normally schedule these activities outside trading hours but this is a CoM project and somehow that message got lost.

Visitor Centre 2 - another trader agrees that avoidable construction work during trading hours is inappropriate although he points out the big picture is a lot more positive. The premier visitor centre for the City of Melbourne is now actually within our market. That is a significant move and can only enhance our tourism credentials. In the meantime let’s hope the contractors do most of their work on Monday and Wednesday or after trading.

String Bean Alley – Sunday produced bumper weather for our outdoor trading areas and a few traders in String Bean Alley reported good business. One had his best day for the year. Reports from under the sheds were not so bright.

Trader Ball – now the minds have cleared from Monday’s Trader Ball there seems unanimous opinion that the night was a success. Although one trader complained that the awards got in the way of more socializing. Mixing up the seating so that a variety of precincts were represented at each table seemed to work really well.

King Island Cheese pop-up in A Shed drew a few favourable comments from traders for its attractive and professional appearance. We’ll let the picture tell the story.

A Trader received his Dandenong Council rates notice this week and with it was a leaflet advertising the Dandenong Market Christmas program. It struck him as a great way to get the message out to all residents and wonders if CoM have done the same.

Engage, Engage, Engage -  a bit of a coincidence, but two traders this week were keen to promote the unique difference that we can offer by simply actively engaging with our customers. While retailers generally look at reducing staff (some removing them altogether) we can create a retail experience by simply engaging and being sociable. The view from both traders is that many customers love it.

Mentors - a trader says he is engaging with mentors once per week and is impressed with the business tips and ideas that come up. He recommends that every trader finds time for a quick discussion with a mentor.

Have Your Say - click here.

Latest Retail News – 11/11/2018

Latest Retail News – 11/11/2018
1. Rumours suggest Toys’R’Us revival in US but unlikely in Australia.
2. Master Grocers Association protests at arrival of Kaufland discount supermarket in Australia.
3. Sydney Lord Mayor proposes 24 hr trading to save Sydney’s nightlife.
4. New tool links customers and shops via video.
5. Zara opens its 19th Australian store at Newcastle.
6. Ebay pushes toys as Toys’R’Us departure leaves a gap.
7. Lindt offers premium chocolate experience at its new Sydney store.
8. Kogan enters the superannuation business.

THE Liberal Party will launch a European style 24-day Christmas Market at Birrarung Marr from next year if it wins this month’s state election in a bid to boost tourism and promote local products.

Tuesday 6 November 2018

Trader Award Recipients 2018

Here is the list of Trader Award recipients from Monday night's Trader Ball.

The 2018 winners of the public voting awards were:
Bongiorno Brothers – Favourite Fruit & Vegetables
The Chicken Pantry – Favourite Poultry & Game
Gazza’s Gourmet Seafood – Favourite Seafood
The Borek Shop – Favourite Eatery
Thompson Meats – Favourite Meat
Bill’s Farm – Favourite Delicatessen
Joe Leuzzi Flowers – Favourite Nursery & Flowers
Geloso Gelateria – Specialty Food & Drink
American Doughnut Kitchen Runner-Up – Specialty Food & Drink (large category*)
Books for Cooks – Favourite General Merchandise
The Soapbox   Runner-Up – Favourite General Merchandise (large category*)
The Hat Project – Favourite Fashion & Accessories
 *For categories with many nominees - ‘General Merchandise’ and ‘Speciality Food & Drink’ - a winner and a runner-up were awarded.

Separate to the public voting awards, Queen Victoria Market Management presented an additional eight awards:
Garden Organics  - Sustainability Award
Geloso Gelateria -  Best New Business Award  
See the Sound by Zo Damage - Services to the Community Award
Food For Your Skin - Home-Grown Award       
JT’s Fruit & Vegetable Supplies - Lifetime Achievement Award – Fruit & Vegetables
Sardes Quality Meats - Lifetime Achievement Award – Meat & Fish Hall
Hellenic Deli  - Lifetime Achievement Award – Dairy Produce Hall
Danny’s Knitwear - Lifetime Achievement Award – General Merchandise

A Great Night For Traders

Tonight’s Trader Ball continued the tradition set on 2016 by focusing on a celebration of traders but this time there were a couple of twists.

For starters, Lord Mayor, Sally Capp, attended and didn’t just pop in for a speech but stayed the night and participated in every award presentation. Chairman of the Board, Jane Fenton, also participated.

But the big change was the presentation of awards based on customer votes. Nearly 8,000 customer votes were collated and awards made in a number of categories with a few surprises. George The Fishmonger didn’t win the fish category nor did the American Donut Van win their category. And some of the winners had questionable knowledge of computers and the internet, showing you don’t have to be a technical whizz to make the most of social media and online promotion.

There were also a number of awards given by management and no doubt full details of all the awards will be published soon.

The night was expertly curated by David Mann, Stan Liacos introduced the award winners and closed the evening with praise for traders and the management team, the music was a well received blend of blues and pop, the food was good, and one of the attendees was only 8 months old and he stayed awake and behaved himself the whole evening

This will go down as a most enjoyable night and one trader predicted that the system of customer voting has introduced a whole new competitive spirit that will likely raise the bar with trader/customer engagement for next time. The bonus is that we get thousands more customer email addresses in the process.

And finally, Danny and Ariel Lewin you should have been there. You won an award.

07/11/2018 11:25:03       The market ball       "What a great new Lord Mayor we have , Sally ,C. She was just like one of us. A great thank you for your time, and great sense of humour. "    Andy   

Sunday 4 November 2018

Heard Under The Sheds – 4/11/2018

This photo was sent to us by a trader keen to show another side to containers in String Bean Alley. In fact a two-sided container. Concern has been expressed about the blank walls facing L Shed but as this photo shows we could have at least some double sided containers in the aisle to create a point of difference and a see-through look.

Another trader wanted to talk containers with the suggestion that the back of the proposed containers in String Bean Alley could be decorated. He is suggesting that the street artists that do such a great job in our CBD laneways to could be asked to draw relevant designs for our market.

And a third trader has expressed concern about some traders opposing the extra containers in String Bean Alley. She is hoping to get a container and wants to know how she can support the idea. Well for her, and any other traders of a similar viewpoint, you simply email , use the subject heading “VHR H0734 - Queen Victoria Market” and explain why you support the plan for 12 more containers.

trader’s dilemma – on Friday this trader was seen frantically trying to set up his stall a bit before time. It turns out he had 3 stalls to set up and staff, but only himself and one other to do the work. This was shaping up to be a supreme multi-tasking day.

They’re back!!!! – after a few weeks absence, Romeo and Theresa have opened their newly renovated café in F Shed. The café looks great and the personal service (and great banter) continues.

Our “Tough Times” article last week drew another suggestion for traders looking to minimise the impact of quiet trade - downsize your stall and consider cutting one or two of your unprofitable days. These sorts of moves are not irreversible and management have indicated they are keen to make it easier for traders to adjust to prevailing trading conditions.

Consolidate please! – this request keeps coming up from traders. In order to avoid the unsightly vacant stall gaps, perhaps it is time we consolidated our trading area so as to present a full, unified retail offer.

Stop feeding the birds – ours is an open air market and birds are part of the environment but they can be pests, particularly for traders who are susceptible to bird droppings. Essentially we should discourage their activity under our sheds but one trader is complaining that some of his fellow traders are actively feeding birds and encouraging their numbers to grow. He says that birds can be cute but they can also be damaging to business. Let’s stop the feeding.

There has been a lot of speculation under the sheds about how many traders will turn up to the Traders Ball. One more night and we will know. You will get a report, and pictures on Victraders as soon as possible after the event.
PS - We understand that about 60 more traders and their partners are expected to attend than for the last ball - Ed.

Box storage – the new arrangement for boxes to be stored on trader’s stalls or over in Franklin St. stores is being worked through with traders. Some traders have chosen to ignore the ban on indiscriminate parking of boxes and a few made the mistake of putting their boxes in a vacant stall next to Betty Jennings on Sunday. Betty took offence at “putting your rubbish next to my stall” and with help from Market Officer Alex, the boxes were moved by their owners. There are some traders you don’t mess with.

A trader suggests that the new Information Centre in String bean Alley should be linked up with the portable exchange booth. He believes the two functions are compatible. He also suggests that they could be positioned up in A Shed adjacent to the café on the corner of Peel and Victoria St. creating another compatible association and helping to activate A Shed.

The Decision by Heritage Victoria to refuse approval for the Upper market underground construction has at last been given in detail. One of our scholarly traders has summarised their multi-paged decision as follows–
1.    They needed more information on the entirety of the project not just Quarter 2.
2.    The impact on the current state of the market. Once you change something it has on-going ramifications that leads to more change.
3.    Concern at the impact on traders during construction.
4.    They didn’t feel the economic case was convincing.
5.    Public opinion.
All of which led one trader to ask just how convincing the obvious current decline of the market was in suggesting that something has to be done to accommodate change.