Tesco, the UK’s largest retailer, plans to build four ‘mini-villages’ in southeast England in an effort to expand its retail reach.
Tesco, the UK’s largest retailer, plans to build four ‘mini-villages’ in southeast England in an effort to expand its retail reach. The villages will feature groups of homes, all near a Tesco store, that customers can purchase through the company’s real estate agent service, securing a mortgage through its banking arm and fitting it out with Tesco products bought on one of the company’s credit cards.
“Through these developments we are able to invest and create jobs in areas that many other developers cannot and will not,” a Tesco spokesman said.
But critics said Tesco could come to dominate the lives of its consumers and could lead to it dominating the UK economy.
The Times Online reports:
“There’s a sense Tesco is using its market power to dominate aspects of the economy,” Josh Ryan-Collins of New Economics Foundation told The Times. “There is a need for more affordable housing but there is a danger with Tesco’s moves. If they provide the mortgage, if they act as estate agent, if they provide a credit card, if they sell you a house, they will end up with more personal information about you than the government.”