A DECISION that will determine if a locally owned hardware store is allowed to be sold to multinational corporations has been delayed.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission was due to to make a final decision next week on whether G Gay and Co could be sold off to a joint venture between Woolworth's and American company Lowe's.
The decision was due to be handed down next Thursday, July 5, but it has now been pushed back indefinitely.
On the ACCC website, it says the decision has been "delayed pending receipt of further information from the parties".
It is concerned the sale could create a monopoly on the Ballarat hardware market.
G Gay and Co owner David Gay said he had not received any indication as to which way the ACCC was leaning.
"Our initial fears were that they had made their first opinion and that it would be difficult to sway," he said.
"At least it show they are considering our submissions, which is a positive."
Mr Gay said although it was encouraging to see there was genuine consideration being put into the decision, it was disappointing that it had been delayed.
He said with large business deals on the line, he wanted a decision "as soon as possible".
The ACCC report expresses concern that Woolworths is wiping out a competitor in the Ballarat hardware market by taking over two G Gay and Co stores.
It regards Dahlsens and Bunnings as the only two other competitors in the city.
G Gay and Co disputes there will be a market monopoly, pointing to Whiteheads Timber Sales and Robert Sim building supplies as other key competitors.