This paper takes as its starting point the UK and uses consumer panel data to examine the trends in retailer concentration and own lable on a long and short term basis. It considers the extent to which recent trends in the major multiples are part of an established pattern, or whether they reflect the threat of discount retailing from other European countries. It examines similar data for a number of European countries and asks to what degree an homogeneous retail trade is likely to develop in Europe. Does pan-European marketing and branding offer a counter to retailer power for the major manufacturers? Is it realistic for manufacturers to pursue a partnership strategy with retailers, and if so what information is needed? The paper concludes by examining the role of the information provider and the implications of retailer power in relation to the ownership of key data. It argues the case for independently based information on the market place.