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Final curtain for DBC after 110 years in business Nearly £55m profit for Bestway Wholesale
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contents Death By Constriction With the end of DBC Foodservice, another long-established name in the C&C/wholesale industry disappears from the scene. While its demise falls short of the shock horror situation when Nurdin & Peacock was swallowed up by Booker in the ’90s, this is still a major blow to what is becoming an increasingly fragmented sector of the trade. It marks the disappearance of a company that started as the Danish Bacon Co over 100 years ago and then developed into a leading foodservice wholesaler. Perhaps DBC should stand for Death By Constriction, because its removal follows not just a period of general economic blight, but also one of tough measures in the foodservice channel. While accurate figures are hard to come by, there are certainly far fewer pubs in the UK than there were, say, five years ago. Restaurants, too, have been feeling the pinch, with chains offering cash-strapped consumers money-off deals to eat out. Nursing homes, prisons and educational establishments are other foodservice outlets which have been forced to reduce costs. An acquaintance of mine who is responsible for purchasing food at a local school has a daily budget of less than £2 for each hungry pupil. Needless to say, fillet steak or lobster are never on the menu! And the food is still expected to be tasteful, nutritious and low in fat. For the wholesaler, put into the mixing bowl higher fuel costs and vehicle maintenance and it’s easy to grasp the problems being faced. DBC RIP.
On the brink of passing £4bn turnover mark ... see p.4
4–7 DBC forced out of business ... Booker just short of £4bn ... Confex grows by 8% ... Profit and sales gains for Bestway ... Expansion at Wing Yip headquarters ... FWD pleased with HMRC alcohol fraud response ... DEFRA officials visit Booker site ... Batleys’ IT installation ... Soft drinks near £10bn.
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Cash & Carry Management
• April 2012 • 3
news IN BRIEF Summer deals Bestway Group has launched a ‘Big Summer’ promotion, running from the end of the month until 13 September. Customers will be able to earn a 4% rebate on their purchases, the deals being dubbed ‘sizzlers’ and ‘scorchers’. Retail customers also have the opportunity, in conjunction with Britvic, of winning a delivery van.
VAT fight The UK Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance has condemned plans by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to impose VAT on some sports drinks and has pledged to fight what it describes as a ‘health tax’. Under proposals in the Budget, some of these drinks will be subject to a 20% VAT rate for the first time from 1 October.
Customer mag Fairway Foodservice, whose 21 members have a combined turnover of £220m, is launching Take Stock, a new customer magazine. The plan is to publish every two months.
BCP client Ipswich-based foodservice wholesaler Brook Street Foods has invested in a 14-user end-to-end Accord distribution system from BCP.
Vestey and Brakes step in As this issue of Cash & Carry Management was going to press, the painful process of breaking up DBC Foodservice – with debts of £65m – was nearing completion. The signs were that most of the 982 staff would be made redundant and that most of the 12 depots would be closed. On a positive note, the giant Vestey Group, with a turnover of £600m, has agreed to take on the running of the doomed wholesaler’s Petersfield (Hants) and Dundonald (Ayrshire) depots, which service the £70m annual Ministry of Defence contract. That has ensured that the combined staff of 245 will keep their jobs. In another transaction, old rival Brakes came to an agreement with administrators Baker Tilly to service some of DBC’s main national customers. Russell Cash, joint administrator, told Cash & Carry Management: “I am afraid I cannot tell you the names of these companies.” However, they probably include all, or some, of the following: Caffé Nero, Prezzo
...but not enough people loved the wholesaler.
and Loch Fyne restaurants, the Barracuda Pub Group, the NHS contract and some of the 24 local authorities which were serviced by DBC. Cash’s initial comment was: “Unfortunately, we have had to make 287 staff redundant. All but two of these – who worked at the Welwyn Garden City (Herts) headquarters – were based at the remaining distribution depots.” At the time of going to press, the number of redundancies was rising steeply, with both the Cardiff and Warrington branches on the verge of closure. Asked whether acting chief executive Andrew Ramsden and md Chris Horne would be staying,
Cash replied: “They are supporting us with regard to our strategy. It wasn’t the banks who notified us of the situation but the directors themselves.” Cash and his fellow administrators had hoped to dispose of DBC intact. But when this plan failed to attract bidders, it was decided to sell the business piecemeal. The wholesaler, founded as Danish Bacon Co more than 100 years ago (1902), was owned by a company headed by Ramsden, together with Iceland freezer chain md Malcolm Walker and Iceland’s finance director Tarsem Dhaliwal. Tel: Baker Tilly (0113) 285 5000.
Nearly £4bn sales for Booker In the 12 weeks to 23 March Booker increased sales by 4.8% (non-tobacco up by 4.1% and tobacco by 5.9%). This meant that annual turnover of the C&C/wholesaler went up by 7.3% to £3.9bn, with the total like-forlike figure rising by 6.1%, like-for-like non-tobacco up by 5.1% and tobacco ahead by 7.8%. Sales to both caterers and retailers grew by 6.1%.
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
The number of customers increased by 5% to 481,000 and sales on the internet soared by 21% to £635m. Net cash totalled £63m, compared with £27m in the previous 12 months. Chief executive Charles Wilson (above) commented: “Our delivered wholesale
businesses are doing well and our expansion in India continues following the opening of our second branch in Mumbai. “We continue to make good progress. We are serving 22,000 more customers than last year.” Tel: Booker Group (01933) 371000.
Group achieves 8% growth While admitting that it has had a difficult trading year, Confex believes that, “with the combined resilience of our members and the commitment and drive of our team, we can still produce good performances in all the major categories – confectionery, soft drinks, snacks and foodservice”. Managing director Nicky White said the group had achieved 8% year-on-year growth to £1.65bn. Two suppliers were voted ‘supplier of the year’ – Mars
Confectionery (retail) and Westmill (foodservice). Westmill sales executive Tamara Mustachi told Cash & Carry Management: “We have consistently seen our sales into members increase year on year, 2011 being no exception, with growth of more than 30%. “Confex brings the best deals to the members and is quick to respond to market movements, especially within the commodities market.” The group last year added some significant new members, including Euro Foods Group, of Newport, Gwent,
Heart beating faster Blakemore’s niche operation Heart Distribution is expected to hit annual sales of around £2.5m – 25% up on the previous 12 months. Formed five years ago, the company distributes speciality food and drink on behalf of 138 local producers. Its ethos is ‘One order, one invoice, one delivery’. At last month’s Food & Drink Expo in Birmingham, Heart launched a service that matches customers to producers in their locality.
Commercial manager Caoire Blakemore said: “The aim is to help retailers who are experiencing increased demand from customers to improve the offering of local and regional food in their stores. “We will be able to provide a tailored directory of ‘must stock’ from food and drink locally, including the exact distance producers are situated from their stores.” Tel: Heart Distribution (01902) 308996.
and Wardfield (trading as Fresco Foodservice), based in Glasgow. Tel: Confex Group (01608) 649000.
Additions Landmark Wholesale has added to its Lifestyle ownlabel range with the launch of 200ml orange and apple juice drinks (price-marked at 25p), one-litre apple juice (priced at 75p) and 80s tea bags (priced at 69p). Senior trading director Jon Burton (pictured) said that all offered retailers a minimum 25% profit on return. The group has also expanded its Value range to 32 lines by introducing cooked meat packs (pricemarked at £1). Burton said: “Lifestyle Value, our price-marked, economy range of everyday basic groceries, gives independents a real point of difference – particularly important where local competition is fierce or where customers are buying on price alone.” Tel: Landmark Wholesale (01908) 255300.
Blakemore subsidiary winning more customers.
The £3m contract for Revolution vodka bars, which has 62 outlets and was previously handled by the doomed DBC Foodservice, has been switched to the newly-formed Chef Direct division operated by Booker. Tel: Chef Direct (0845) 266 8888.
Attractive line-up Booker’s chief executive Charles Wilson and Spar UK’s managing director Debbie Robinson are among the speakers at the Scottish Wholesale Association’s ‘Ahead of the Game’ annual conference being staged at Crieff Hydro from 14–17 June. Presentations will also be given by Alex Fisher, md of 3663; Asim Sarwar, md of United Wholesale (Scotland); Martin Williams, md of Landmark Wholesale; Jason Wouhra, director and company secretary of East End Foods; and Denys Shortt, chairman and chief executive of wholesaler DCS Europe. Supplier executives lined up to appear at the SWA event include Marcus Freer, sales director of SHS Sales & Marketing (GB); Mark Hunter, CEO of Molson Coors; Steve Kitching, md of Cott Beverages; and Karen Salters, joint md of Beverage Brands. Papers will also be given by Scott Brady, the SWA’s independent lobbyist and consultant; Jonathon Rons, client director of him!; and Tom Kuzio, ex-senior vicepresident (sales) at PepsiCo International and now managing partner of business consultancy The Kuzio Group. SWA president George Benson said: “We have attracted a host of highprofile speakers, many of them the most senior captains of industry from within the wholesale sector.” SWA executive director Kate Salmon added: “Our top-flight business sessions and opportunities to network make our conference a ‘must attend’ event.” Tel: SWA 0131-556 8753.
Cash & Carry Management
• April 2012 • 5
Booker hosts DEFRA tour In a fact-finding tour arranged by the Federation of Wholesale Distributors, 12 officials from the DEFRA Food Policy Unit were shown round Booker’s Hatfield distribution centre. The party, whose areas of interest included supply chain security, sustainability, food composition, and industry growth and competitiveness, looked round the 27-acre site, from which chilled, frozen and ambient products are distributed. Booker’s distribution director Ian Taylor showed the group the warehouse management and RF picking systems, dealing with 75,000 retailers and 325,000 foodservice customers. He also spoke of the energy-saving features of the location, including a renewable power generation plant. The DEFRA officials were also shown how greater efficiency has led to a cut in food miles. Taylor, general manager David MacCallum and the FWD’s director of communications David Visick answered questions on the
Double hit Booker’s branch at Hayle, Cornwall, which has been undergoing a refit, was last month the target for two thefts in a week. In the first, some copper piping was removed from the outside of the building, and in the second thieves stole three-quarters of a ton of polarised fencing (120 x 8ft lengths), valued at £600. Two heavy-duty plant batteries and a 6ft rolled steel joist were also taken. Tel: Booker Group (01933) 371000.
Watch out for that forklift around the corner!
workings of the supply chain and issues which impact on the wholesale sector. FWD chief executive James Bielby said: “This was an excellent opportunity for the Department officials to see for themselves the scale and complexity of the operation. They also learned about
the lengths Booker goes to ensuring hundreds of thousands of small businesses – even those in the most remote locations – receive the products and support they need to thrive.” Tel: FWD (01323) 724952. Tel: Booker Group (01933) 371000.
A £9.7bn category While soft drink value in all channels of the C&C/wholesale trade grew last year, such was the low rate of growth, volume was, at best, static, said Britvic Soft Drinks customer management director Murray Harris. He was speaking at the presentation of the company’s annual soft drinks report, where he announced that total soft drinks turnover last year rose by 4% to £9.7bn, of which take-home accounted for £7bn (up 7%) and the on-trade for £2.7bn (down 1%). Total volume was up by just 1% to 7.5bn litres. Cash & carry value sales increased by 2%, delivered grocery by 3% and delivered foodservice by 4%. The ‘big three’ – CocaCola Enterprises, Britvic and GlaxoSmithKline – together
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
Batleys’ IT installed in Scotland The Batleys division of Bestway Group has installed Celtech Ab-initio software at the three Martex and two Bellevue cash & carries in Scotland which have been absorbed into the business. The system provides the C&C operator with an end-toend, centralised operations management solution with real-time visibility. Martin Race, Batleys’ operations director, said: “Ab-initio’s ‘one version of the truth’ means that everyone throughout the business is using one system. We can see everything, from stock levels to point-of-sale data, from anywhere and in realtime.” He added that benefits include better stock availability, enhanced promotions and more efficient ordering. Dublin-based Celtech claims to be ‘the only provider of true real-time solutions for fast-moving retail and wholesale chains in the food, convenience, entertainment, electronics and speciality sectors’. Tel: Batleys (01484) 481150. For an exclusive interview with Martin Race, see pp.12–13
represent almost 50% of the soft drinks market, said Harris. In take-home, the leader, cola, accounted for 22.1% of revenue (£1.54bn). One of the biggest improvers in this channel was glucose stimulant drinks – up 17.1% to £792m. Tel: Britvic Soft Drinks (01245) 261871.
P&H listing A selection of Yum Yum Bros’ Ndulge bakery snacks, including Chocolate Tiffin, Ultimate Chocolate Cookie tubs and a variety of flapjacks, has gained a listing with Palmer & Harvey. Tel: Yum Yum Bros (01277) 225808. Tel: Palmer & Harvey (01273) 222100.
Bestway still rising Bestway Group increased pre-tax profit within the wholesale division by 10.3% in the year to 30 June 2011 – from £49.6m to £54.7m. Sales rose by 11.2% from £1.99bn to £2.21bn. For the group as a whole (including banking and cement) there was an 11.1% increase in turnover to £2.34bn (£2.1bn), with pretax profit rising by 65.3% from £72m to £119m. Group chief executive Zameer Choudrey said: “Despite difficult business conditions, we have maintained our focus on the strategic goals by increasing turnover and market share of our businesses both in the UK and in Pakistan.” In the period under review, Bestway acquired the three Martex C&Cs in Scotland from CJ Lang &
Son. These joined the earlier acquisition north of the border of Bellevue Cash & Carry, giving the group seven branches in Scotland. The group also increased its stakes in insurance and banking, providing it with a majority interest in both UBL Insurers, Pakistan, and United Bank. Tangible fixed assets after
Choudrey: ‘We have increased market share.’
depreciation as at 30 June 2011 stood at £524.8m. During the year, £5.5m was spent on the Martex purchase and £10m on new cash & carries in Aintree and Brighton. Sales of the Best-in ownlabel range grew by 21.3% to £102m, while export business was up by 20.5%. Looking ahead, Choudrey said: “The focus of the group’s wholesale business on organic growth is supported by investments in existing and new warehouses and initiatives. “Despite tough trading conditions, we are confident we will continue to provide maximum support to our customers by delivering the best prices, value and service to them.” Tel: Bestway Group 0208453 1234.
FWD welcomes alcohol decision The Government’s agreement to consult on measures to prevent alcohol fraud provides a huge opportunity for C&C/wholesalers to reclaim beer sales from criminals, said James Bielby, chief executive of the Federation of Wholesale Distributors. He added that proposals put forward by the FWD form the basis of HM Revenue & Customs’ consultation. In the HMRC document, Treasury Minister Chloe Smith said: “Alcohol fraud results in revenue losses of up to £1.2bn a year, depriving the Government of revenue to fund vital public services. It also undermines legitimate businesses. “The availability of cheap illicit alcohol puts the overwhelming majority of law-
abiding businesses who sell alcohol products legally at an unfair disadvantage.” C&C/wholesalers believe that a large proportion of the beer sold for export from the UK is diverted onto the UK market without UK duty being paid. HMRC stated: “Fiscal marks would undermine the modus operandi of largescale beer smuggling operations. These schemes have contributed to significant reductions in illicit markets – for example, losses to spirits fraud have reduced from an estimated £320m to £130m since their introduction.” The consultation agreement is the result of 18 months of lobbying by the FWD. Among the Federation’s
proposals are: duty stamps on beer, a registration scheme for C&C/ wholesalers and stricter controls on the movement of products in the supply chain. Tel: FWD (01323) 724952.
Major expansion programme.
Wing Yip growing Oriental foods specialist Wing Yip hopes that a £4.8m expansion project at its headquarters site at Nechels, Birmingham, will be completed by Christmas. Previous work saw the 49,700 sq ft cash & carry increase in size by 75,000 sq ft; now an an additional 30,000 sq ft is being made available with the purchase of adjoining land. It will allow the branch to offer a panAsian range. The £102m turnover business is also proposing to add 105,000 sq ft to its 62,000 sq ft unit in Croydon. Tel: Wing Yip 0121-327 6618.
Pouring in to ExCel Around 25,000 of the world’s leading wine producers, agencies, buyers and the trade are expected at the 32nd London International Wine Fair, which is being held at London’s ExCel from 22–24 May. The annual event will feature 20,000 wines and spirits on more than 1,000 stands. There will be pavilions representing Brazil, Lebanon,
Turkey, Moldova Ukraine, Romania, Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia, Russia and Georgia, as well as major producing regions such as Argentina, Australia, California, Chile, France, Italy, Portugal, South Africa and Spain. Debates, briefings, tastings and ‘master classes’ will also be held, as well as the LIWF conference. Tel: LIWF 020-7973 6401.
Cash & Carry Management
• April 2012 • 7
‘Admiral’ of the fleet Creed Foodservice has invested in a dual-temperature boxed delivery van for its Mise en Place division. The truck features the speciality food business’s new livery, introduced in January. Mise en Place commercial manager Steve Wheeler said the Isuzu 7.5-tonne vehicle was needed to service the growth of the company, which specialises in fresh local and specialty products to regional restaurants and hotels. This is the largest truck in the Mise en Place fleet and reflects the growing orders for the business. Another delivery route has been added this year and
Commercial manager Steve Wheeler with the new vehicle.
one more is currently being reviewed. Wheeler said: “Feedback from customers and drivers alike has been fantastic. It has the latest technology for maximum fuel efficiency and uses our new telematics
system to monitor and enhance responsible driver behaviour. We are now delivering to a 50-mile radius six days a week and adding new customers all the time.” Tel: Creed Foodservice (01452) 858190.
Pubs should have a rethink! Pub operators need to think beyond traditional pub food and compete head on with high street restaurant chains in order to secure their survival into the future, said Peter Backman (below), managing director of foodservice researcher Horizons, who was addressing a London travel & leisure conference. “Pubs, under pressure from falling drink sales, are increasingly looking at food to boost their revenues. “However, while the pub food market is heading for saturation, there are still
growth opportunities in the UK for mid-market, quick service and casual dining restaurants serving cheaper food, more quickly.” Backman commented: “Chains like Wagamama and Nandos are profitable
because of their fast turnover and high footfall, while cashpressed customers are attracted by their value-conscious, reliable food. This is the market pubs need to emulate.” Tel: Horizons 020-8349 0162.
Business award Brakes Group has been accredited with a gold in Business in the Community’s 2012 Corporate Responsibility Index. The CRI is aimed at ‘providing a way for companies to transparently improve their social and environmental performance’. By achieving gold, Brakes claims to be “able to demonstrate openness and transparency through effective public reporting of our material environmental and social
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
issues, programmes and performance”. The company was praised for its continued reduction in road miles and CO2 emissions, including the use of rail to replace road deliveries between the Midlands and Scotland, the introduction of liquid natural gas vehicles, efforts to reduce packaging material and support of the Red Tractor scheme. Tel: Brakes Group (0845) 606 9090.
Promoting local goods Visitors to Pro-retail at Telford, organised by Palmer & Harvey, will get the chance to meet some of the UK’s best local producers and then vote for their favourites. In response to the growing popularity of locally made food, drink and gifts, the event will bring together local suppliers from across the country to showcase their products. Those appearing will range from honey-makers in Berkshire to butchers in Lincolnshire. Visitors will make their choices, which will be listed by P&H, ready for retailers to order as soon as a month later. Retailers will also have the opportunity to broker one-to-one exclusive deals with suppliers at the event. Richard Hayhoe, marketing director at P&H, said: “Consumers are increasingly looking for products made locally, with a story behind them and a strong heritage. “It’s what the multiples have really stepped up in the last few years. We’re giving independent retailers the same opportunity. It’s a golden chance to cash in on this growing trend.” Key categories are: impulse, food on the go, fresh products, fresh meat & poultry, gifting solutions, groceries, preserves, cereals, biscuits & cakes. Among the leading fmcg suppliers appearing are Unilever, featuring such products as Flora and PG tips, Burton’s Biscuit Co, Coca-Cola Enterprises and Tangerine Confectionery. Pro-retail takes place on 24 and 25 April. Tel: Palmer & Harvey (01273) 222100.
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Carving up the bacon DBC Foodservice, which began life over 100 years ago as the Danish Bacon Co, is being dismantled after financial setbacks. Mervyn Gilbert reports. I should have twigged something was up when, one working day before I was due to meet DBC Foodservice managing director Chris Horne, his secretary sent me an e-mail to say they would have to cancel. In her own words: “A PFS board meeting has been called quite late in the day and, given the geography of the attendees, Chris was asked to rearrange meetings in his diary for Monday (19 March) to accommodate the PFS meeting.” PFS is Purple Foodservice Solutions, with whom DBC was a partner to service the Ministry of Defence contract. This was the third time my interview with Horne had to be postponed in a matter of weeks. Not only was I peeved at being let down again, but I kept asking myself: “What’s really going on behind the scenes?” The first time I was put off, I was informed – in not so many words – ‘something has cropped up’, and on the second occasion I was told there had been an oversight on Horne’s part because the meeting had inadvertently been arranged at the time of school half term. Because he wanted me to meet all the new DBC Foodservice executives (there had been quite a few in recent months!) and several chose that week to go away on holiday with their family, it would have to be postponed. The third time, however, was different. Just days earlier, it was announced that Andrew Ramsden, the man who had steered the foodservice wholesaler as chief executive for three years until 2010, was returning in the same capacity. Apart from Charles Wilson at Booker, I can’t remember any top executive in the C&C/wholesale sector leaving a leading operator and then coming back to fill the same post or one of comparable seniority. Something was going on.
What next for Ramsden (left) and Horne?
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
Now I know that the meeting, at the Welwyn Garden City, Herts, headquarters of DBC Foodservice, was to discuss the future of the company – and that the outcome was to put it on the market. That decision followed disappointing trading results for the year to 25 March when, despite a 6% increase in sales to £302m, there was a pre-tax loss of nearly £5m compared with a previous corresponding surplus of £1.26m. As with its bigger rivals in foodservice, Brakes and 3663, the ‘win some, lose some’ situation prevails in the sector. Last year DBC added to its tally of national accounts by securing the £2.5m a year contract for Notcutts Garden Centre Group, which operates 18 sites. That joined an enviable list of existing customers such as Caffé Nero, Prezzo and Loch Fyne restaurants, the Barracuda Pub Group, the NHS and 24 local authorities. We are not privy as to whether any ‘biggies’ were lost over the past year. For some reason (someone tell me) losses are never heralded in the same way as gains.
Jewel in the crown The real jewel in DBC’s crown was the MoD contract. A twoyear deal, valued at £140m, was due to run until 2013. That would have continued a link that goes back to 2006 when the business was switched from 3663. DBC was acquired three years ago by a three-man investment team: Ramsden, who had been associated with Woodward Foodservice for several years, Malcolm Walker, co-founder of the Iceland retail chain, and Walker’s finance director, Tarsem Dhaliwal. In C&C/wholesale, Ramsden is the most interesting. Before he first left DBC just over two years ago, after joining as chief executive of the then parent company WF Group Holdings in 2007, he oversaw the sale of Woodward to Brakes. He also negotiated a £35million-plus refinancing package for the foodservice wholesaler with Lloyds TSB. When it was recently announced that he would be serving a second term as chief executive (it was only in an ‘acting’ capacity, but this wasn’t disclosed at the time) working with Horne, there was no explanation for his surprise return. Soon after, the company, with 12 depots, Welwyn Garden City hq and nearly 1,000 staff, was put into administration under the control of accountants Baker Tilly. The plan was to sell the company in toto. But there were no buyers. Now the business is being broken up, with Vestey Group and Brakes the first to partake of the spoils. See News p.4.
IT news DF Wishart Builds Efficiency with STL
New Service to Pre-empt Trading Issues
D F Wishart is installing STL’s flagship Merchandise Management System (MMS), Sales Order Processing system (SOP) and Rep Order System (ROS). Combined, these systems will help Wishart to sustain its reputation for offering the widest range along with a fast and efficient service, even as its business expands.
Server overload is one of the main causes of trading disruption for wholesalers: quite simply, if their server is full, they can’t process orders or issue invoices. STL has addressed this problem through a new partnership with support specialist Comspec IT Solutions, which offers a proactive server monitoring service. This not only provides a wholesaler with a monthly health check of their server; it automatically alerts STL if server performance is compromised, enabling STL to take swift remedial action on the wholesaler’s behalf before trading issues arise.
D F Wishart, a Stax company, is one of Scotland’s foremost wholesale distribution companies. At the heart of its operation is an 80,000ft2 warehouse in Edinburgh, which holds some 35,000 products – representing £2 million – at any time. STL MMS will help the company to manage its stock more efficiently, and keep tight control of prices and margins, while STL SOP will help it to integrate its orders, prompt customers and sales staff about regular purchases, associated sales and promotional offers, and facilitate swift fulfilment.
Neil Thompson, MD at Comspec IT Solutions, said, ‘Our clients have found that the monitoring service makes a huge difference to performance, and is a key component in ensuring a healthy server, maintaining uptime and business continuity – which is critical for wholesalers.
STL ROS will enable sales reps on the road to handle customer accounts, dispatching orders and queries directly to STL MMS and SOP in real time.
‘We are delighted to partner with STL, which is an energetic and forward-thinking company with similar goals and principles to us.’
NCR & STL in Win-Win Partnership STL and NCR have officially entered into a mutually-beneficial partnership, with STL joining the IT giant’s Global Interact Program as an Authorised Solution Reseller. This agreement enables STL to sell NCR’s POS, Self-Service and other solutions and services to its wholesale clients. David Tomlinson, NCR’s Channel Account Manager, said, ‘NCR is actively seeking quality partners to help us expand into new markets, including cash & carry. With its substantial experience, foothold and reputation in this sector, STL fits our partner profile perfectly.’ The arrangement will also introduce STL to NCR’s global network of partners, which will give STL’s recently-announced export programme a boost. To kick-start this strategy, STL will attend NCR’s Partner Conference in Florida on 17 April.
0844 472 4727
Neil Thompson, MD, Comspec
Revamp for Reps Watch out for the revamped STL Rep Order System for reps on the road. It will have: an enhanced appointments diary, details of previous orders, and the ability to both place and release customers from Stop and record returns for uplift. All this information is communicated in real time over the 3G network.
Batleys triumphs in Scotland Batleys has achieved an uplift in sales from its seven-branch Scottish estate while working hard to integrate the former CJ Lang and Bellevue wholesale businesses that it acquired in 2010. In Scotland, Batleys’ integration of Bellevue Cash & Carry and CJ Lang’s wholesale division is almost complete. CJ Lang’s delivered foodservice operation, which is based at Aberdeen and Perth, has been relaunched as Batleys Foodservice. Likewise, Martex’s three cash & carries – in Aberdeen, Dundee and Perth – and Bellevue’s Stirling branch have all been rebranded as Batleys, while Bellevue’s Edinburgh depot continues to trade under its original name. “Bellevue has a good reputation and is well established in Edinburgh city centre and, of course, we already have a Batleys in Edinburgh (Newbridge), so keeping the Bellevue name avoids confusion,” explains operations director Martin Race, who is responsible for all Batleys branches in the UK. “Although integration of CJ Lang and Bellevue is finished in terms of systems and procedures, we have to keep working at it. We have to show some respect to what went before.
Empathy with staff “Batleys had been in the same situation with Bestway so we knew how it felt,” he adds. “There has been a net gain in staff – we now have 400 in Scotland. We have worked hard to get them to understand that we are here to make sales, not just to protect the bottom line – our target is for every depot to be in growth and to increase the number of customers across retail, licensed, catering and foodservice. Since the acquisitions, our sales in Scotland have seen double-digit growth.” In bringing the businesses together, one of the biggest tasks, says Race, was transferring all operations to Batleys’
Martin Race: “We have to keep working at it.”
centralised real-time IT package, Ab-initio. “We started in March 2011 and ran the systems side by side for a while. CJ Lang’s was different from Bellevue’s so we had a big job to do, not only technically but also in training the staff. “Another challenge was to get the Martex depots back up to scratch. They had been starved of investment for a while because they were non-core business for CJ Lang.” To date, Batleys has spent £500,000 on improving the acquired depots, and there is similar expenditure to come. It has relaid the wines & spirits departments, installed extra racking and created better display ends. Next it will upgrade the lighting, refrigeration and delivery vehicles.
The Scottish depots have “centrally controlled autonomy”.
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
Batleys has expanded the branded range of products, and has also put in its own-label ranges. “Despite retail own-label not being quite as strong in Scotland as in England because Scots like branded products, our Best-In sales have risen across the board,” reports Race. “And the acceptance of our Essentially Catering products by foodservice operators is particularly pleasing since it means the spec is right.” By June, all of the depots, except Stirling, will offer butchery and fresh fruit & veg. The Stirling branch is focused on retail – there is not enough space to offer catering as well, Race explains. “At Batleys, we are used to having a minimum of 60,000 sq ft. Some of the acquired depots have only 20,000 to 30,000 sq ft. The Stirling site has a bit of space for expansion and although Perth is tight we might be able to get more height on it.” Batleys’ Huddersfield head office oversees health & safety, IT, the Xtra Local retail club, pet food buying, and credit
interview control. On all other trading matters, the seven Scottish depots have “centrally controlled autonomy”, says Race. In July last year, the company set up a dedicated Scottish office at the Bellevue branch. David Livingstone, formerly general manager of Batleys Glasgow, looks after cash & carry, and Frank Fraser, previously financial director of Bellevue, is responsible for Batleys Foodservice and Bellevue’s Drinks Direct on-trade operation, which was inherited from Bellevue and was also launched from Batleys Glasgow in October 2011. Both David and Bellevue in Edinburgh has retained its name. Frank report directly to Race. Gerry Fraser, ex-trading director of Bellevue, negotiates the Scottish version of national Glasgow, Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Dundee. You start to get promotions, featured in a special Batleys Scotland brochure, traction when you have seven depots and, in an ideal world, and Xtra Local retail club deals. Completing the head office we would want another depot further north. Retailers hadn’t team is Steve Irons, formerly CJ Lang’s foodservice conhad a choice before in some areas – for example, Dundee troller, who manages Batleys Foodservice’s Scottish conwas previously dominated by Premier.” tracts. More than 100 existing and prospective Best-one memContracts account for 25% of the company’s foodservice bers are expected to attend Batleys’ first-ever two-day retail sales in Scotland. “We haven’t really changed the foodserseminar, which will take place at Dalmahoy, near Edinburgh, vice operation,” says Race. “There have been synergies with in June. our own business and we have taken some learnings. “It is certainly tough recruiting new members,” concedes “We are looking at the logistics of delivering to foodserRace. “Everyone and his dog are looking for the same cusvice operators from Edinburgh (Newbridge) and Glasgow – tomer. We are the new kids on the block but we do have this facility should be in place by July, the start of our finansomething different to offer. Our imagery and support are cial year. We want to get Scotland covered before we think of good. introducing the service anywhere else.” “To succeed, independents have to join a symbol group Race admits that “there was a touch of frustration” among and retail club and be disciplined,” he insists. “Our Xtra Local foodservice customers for six to eight retail club is flying – it is up a minimum weeks after the takeover. “Now they of 20% year on year – and we now like our service better – for example, have over 200 members in Scotland.” we can see stock levels in real time and Commenting on the market place we have a professional call board. We generally, Race says: “There was little offer 18,000 lines and use 22 vehicles impact on the independent retailer last to supply nearly 2,000 outlets.” year, but during January and February Batleys has a team of nine people this year conditions got much tougher. Martin Race, Batleys’ working on Batleys Foodservice and “Batleys is still trading up, but not operations director Drinks Direct, with telesales based at to the same extent as last year. Perth and Aberdeen. Customers are reining in their spend“We are contemplating bringing together Batleys ing, and the newspapers are not helping by spreading doom Foodservice and Drinks Direct but there are some logistical and gloom. problems to solve first – for instance, Drinks Direct uses tran“However, the cigarette display ban should benefit indesit vans to reach inner city venues and we use larger vehicles pendents, as would minimum pricing on alcohol – if it was for foodservice. introduced with teeth. It would stop the multiples using loss “We are also considering whether to extend Drinks Direct leaders and make the market more stable.” into England.” Race, who has considerable familiarity with Scotland, Bestway Direct, delivery arm of the Best-one symbol group, having covered the country for Linfood between 1985 and appointed Colin Smith as regional manager for Scotland 1988, visits every couple of months as part of his UK-wide soon after Batleys’ advance north of the Border. Colin, who responsibilities. previously worked for Costco Edinburgh and Bellevue, has “I love my job,” he says. “There are challenges every day helped the company sign up over 60 members in Scotland. and it is tough on occasion but I am determined to continue Says Race: “We have had some success with Best-one in to develop the Batleys brand across the UK.”
‘We are the new kids on the block but we do have something different to offer.’
Cash & Carry Management
• April 2012 • 13
products & promotions Three additions
Jubilee tin UNITED BISCUITS UK – The snacks, biscuits and cakes manufacturer has launched a limited-edition tin of McVitie’s biscuits to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee. The 475g assortment (rsp £5) has a royal blue theme featuring the head of the Queen as well as the Royal Mail stamp. Sarah Heynen, marketing director of sweet biscuits, commented: “With a long history of links to royalty, that includes creating both the wedding and diamond anniversary cakes for Queen Elizabeth II, McVitie’s, as holder of a Royal Warrant, has created this special tin of assorted biscuits to celebrate this momentous British occasion. “Last year, the McVitie’s Royal Wedding biscuit tin flew off retailers’ shelves to deliver £1.4m worth of incremental sales.” Tel: UBUK 020-8324 5000.
Golf drive WARSTEINER – The premium German beer brand, distributed in the UK by Windfall Drinks, has launched a marketing campaign to drive consumer demand in both the on and off-trades. It has also been named as the official supplier of beer to the European Tour and BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth Golf Club from 24-27 May. A package of promotional activities includes a neck-hanger competition appearing on bottles, offering trips to the Wentworth event. Ads in both the consumer and trade press are scheduled for later in the year, supported by an ongoing public relations programme. Tel: Windfall Drinks (01491) 845620.
UNILEVER UK – Hellmann’s has added three new flavours: hint of caramelised onion, twist of pepper and hint of wasabi (rsp £1.69). Available in the same squeezable packaging format as the existing range, the newcomers feature either a pictorial onion, peppercorns or wasabi paste on the pack. The spark of chilli variant, launched last year, now also comes in a 400g jar format. Marketing manager Haseeb-urRahman said: “Our existing range of Hellmann’s flavoured mayonnaises, including pinch of mustard, spark of chilli, touch of garlic and zing of lemon, is growing by 150% year on year (IRI).” The launch of the new variants is being supported by a budget of £2.2m this year, including a tv campaign running from May to July. Tel: Unilever UK (0800) 731 1597.
TV and cinema GLAXOSMITHKLINE – Sub-brand Lucozade Revive is currently being advertised on tv. The commercial features a dance performance designed to grab viewers’ attention while informing them about the new product. Aimed at 25-35 year olds, the £2.8m campaign began with a 10-second teaser for one week, followed by four weeks of 30-second bursts both on tv and in cinemas. It is the fifth advertising instalment of the Lucozade YES campaign, building brand equity for the entire portfolio and driving category growth. Lucozade Revive is a lightly sparkling energising drink containing B vitamins and only 50 calories per bottle. It comes in three flavours: lemongrass with ginger, orange with acai, and cranberry with acai. Tel: GlaxoSmithKline 020-8047 5000.
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On, now off DIAGEO (GB) – Jeremiah Weed Brews, made from fermented fruit alcohol, spirit and ginger or bourbon flavourings, is being introduced nationally across the off-trade, following a launch in the on-trade last year. The drinks (4% abv) come in two variants: Root Brew (ginger) and Sour Mash Brew (bourbon). The product launch is being supported with a multi-channel advertising campaign, plus sampling at festivals and outdoor events. Marketed under the strapline ‘It’s what it is’, the drinks are available in a single 500ml bottle, with an rsp of £2.20. Tel: Diageo (GB) 020-8978 6000.
New flavour FERRERO UK – tic tac, the company’s pocket confectionery brand, will next month launch a ‘strawberry fields’ flavour. It will bring the number of permanent variants in the range to five. The new style comes in an 18g single pack (rsp 50p) and a 49g size (£1.25). It will benefit from a £2m investment for the tic tac brand as part of Ferrero’s plans to double the size of its UK business over the next five years. Customer development director Levi Boorer said: ”The introduction is well timed to maximise the typical 21% spike of fruit-flavoured sugar confectionery during the summer months (AC Nielsen). “We are confident that once consumers try the new ‘strawberry fields’ they will get the taste for it all the year round so it becomes a best-selling tic tac variant.” Tel: Ferrero UK (01923) 690300.
• • • •
Barr brand is growing massively at 33% year on year * Impactful new design Great value price-marked packs throughout 2012 Eyecatching outdoor advertising and POS
MAKE YOUR SALES DAZZLE, CALL US ON 01204 664295 *Nielsen Scantrack, Value Sales, MAT to 4/2/12, Total Impulse
products & promotions Agreement ends
Two newcomers IMPERIAL TOBACCO – The supplier is broadening its Lambert & Butler range with the introduction of Fresh Burst and Profile. L&B Fresh Burst allows smokers the opportunity to squeeze a capsule in the filter to release a burst of flavour if and when they choose to do so. Profile has been designed for ‘the modern, busy consumer’. The cigarettes have the same L&B blend and are the same length as king size, but are smaller in diameter, with a lower price. Sue Tranter, consumer marketing manager, said: “Our research identified two key areas where we could add value and improve our consumers’ smoking experiences. “The first was a preference for more control over the taste and aroma of the cigarette and the second identified a significant number of loyal Lambert & Butler smokers wishing to gain even more value from their brand.” Rsps: Fresh Burst (pre-Budget) £6.60 and Profile £6.50. Price-marked packs carry the same prices. Tel: Imperial Tobacco (0117) 963 6636.
GLOBAL BRANDS – The company has ended its agency agreements with Berry Bros & Rudd, resulting in Pink Pigeon rum and King’s Ginger liqueur leaving its drinks portfolio. Over the past year, King’s Ginger has gained distribution into the London free on-trade as well as establishing national accounts. Global Brands has also achieved its objective of gaining distribution for Pink Pigeon through ‘high profile’ on and off-trade accounts across the capital. Simon Green, marketing director for Global Brands, said: “We have reached the right point to conclude our brand work with Berry Bros & Rudd, having completed the launch work and development activity for both Pink Pigeon and King’s Ginger. “While we have clearly established both brands in the market, our development strategy is more about scale and focusing on brands with potential for significant growth. As such, we have decided to end the agency agreements.” Tel: Global Brands (01246) 216000.
Free drinks COCA-COLA ENTERPRISES – Powerade, which is hydrating athletes at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, has launched an exclusive on-pack promotion giving away a Powerade Olympic Games Sports Bottle free with every purchase. The bottle, which features the Olympic Games rings, is the same as that being used in the Olympic Village and by all the athletes. The promotion runs until the end of October and applies to packs of Powerade ION4 and Powerade Zero. Tel: CCE (08457) 227222.
Senior Moments SCANDINAVIAN TOBACCO GROUP – In our Tobacco feature last month, we inadvertently referred to the company’s new Moments miniature cigars (Blue and Original, rsp £3.10) as being part of the BAT portfolio. Apologies to both companies.
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Icing on the cake GENERAL MILLS UK & IRELAND – The Betty Crocker cake and cookie mix brand has reported year-on-year market penetration of 16%, brand growth of 38% and brand share reaching 31.5%. The range includes Devil’s Food Cake, Carrot Cake, Chocolate Swirl Cake, Cookies and Cream Muffins. Among the recent additions are: Chocolate & Vanilla Whoopie Pies, Double Chocolate Whoopie Pies, Sunny Lemon Cake with Glaze, Sticky Choc Brownies with Icing, Smooth Milk Chocolate Layer Cake, Double Choc Chip Cookies and Chewy Choc Chunk Brownies (rsp £2.15). All data IRI/TNS year to 21/1/12.
Tel: General Mills (01895) 201367.
‘Thanks mum’ PROCTER & GAMBLE – To kick-start the supplier’s ’Thank You, Mum’ campaign leading up to the Olympic and Paralympic Games, some of the UK’s top medal hopefuls last month called on Brits to thank their mums on Mother’s Day for their hard work and the sacrifices they have made. Jessica Ennis, Sir Chris Hoy and Paula Radcliffe are just some who recorded thank you messages. P&G is calling on the nation to tell their mums how much they appreciate them and be in with a chance of winning their parents family tickets to the Games – either the 100m final or the opening or closing ceremony of both the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Some 50 sets of four tickets are available. Tel: Procter & Gamble (0800) 597 3388.
products & promotions RYO tobacco
SCANDINAVIAN TOBACCO GROUP – Newly-launched Salsa is a range of rollyour-own premium blend Virginia tobacco. It has been introduced after a successful trial in a number of cash & carry and multiple retail outlets. Alan Graham, head of marketing, said that Salsa, with its ‘eyecatching packaging and competitive trade margin’, will help retailers cash in on the growing RYO market. The variants are: 10 x 12.5g (rsp £3.19 per pack), 5 x 25g (£6.29) and 5 x 50g (£11.99). STG UK will also be adding a 5 x 12.5g format by the end of this month, designed specifically to reduce cash outlay for independent retailers. Graham commented: “Growing our RYO business is very much a focus for us this year. “The RYO category has grown by 56% in the last five years and shows no signs of slowing.” Tel: STG UK 020-8731 3400.
GALBANI – ‘Italy’s No.1 cheese brand’ is inviting Britons to ‘Celebrate The Italian Way’ prior to summer festivities. Featuring the Union Jack, but with an Italian slant, the campaign is aimed at the foodservice trade, as well as consumers. Various events and activities are planned, using an Italian twist on British cuisine. A company spokesman said: “2012 provides all of us with a fantastic opportunity. In a year that sees many key celebrations and events, people will be out celebrating with friends and families, and visitor numbers will increase. “It would be a crime for the foodservice trade not to take advantage. This year, incidentally, is also Galbani’s 130th birthday.” The programme begins with BritishItalian chef Valentina Harris creating a selection of classics with an Italian flavour, including Ricotta Strawberry Parfait for Wimbledon and Jubilee sandwiches for Italian-themed street parties. A London Routemaster bus, with an Italian makeover, will serve Italian cheeses over the Jubilee weekend. Tel: Galbani (01737) 783300.
Choc variant BURTON’S BISCUIT COMPANY – The supplier has launched a campaign for the launch of Dodgers’ Choccie variant. The £3m package is spearheaded by a new tv ad that breaks later this month. The first airing will be on Britain’s Got Talent and pits the Jammie, Toffee and Choccie Monkeys against each other in a chart battle. The initial 10-second commercial will be followed by a 40-second ad. Viewers will be directed to the Dodgers website to vote for their favourite performance. “Introduction of the new Choccie variant follows a year of sustained growth for Dodgers,” said category & activation controller David Costello. “In the last 12 months the brand has grown by 18.2% in value (IRI year to 21/1/12). “Feedback has been so positive that we expect sales of Choccie Dodgers to be even bigger than the recently launched Toffee variant, which achieved £4m in its first nine months.” Tel: Burton’s Biscuit Co (01727) 899700.
Challenge £1,000 prizes PRINCES – The canner has launched an on-pack promotion across its range of sandwich pastes, offering consumers the chance to win £1,000 every month until the end of October. Shoppers are required to collect codes from the limited-edition packs, which can then be used to enter an online prize draw to win £1,000 off a mortgage, or £1,000 in cash. Tel: Princes 0151-966 7000.
RED BULL – The 473ml can, available as a standard or £1.99 price-marked pack, has been redesigned. It features stunt rider Travis Pastrana and gives consumers the chance to interact with the sportsman. For the first time in the UK, the can will carry a QR code, leading consumers to exclusive digital content via their smartphones. They will then be able to ‘Challenge Travis’ by inventing stunts for him to undertake on a tv show. Tel: Red Bull Co 020-7434 5670.
Country look ACCOLADE WINES – New ‘Fabulously British’ limited-edition packaging for Stone’s ginger wine can be seen in key off-trade outlets until September. The appearance encapsulates the brand’s British heritage by incorporating a Union Jack. Clare Griffiths, European marketing director, said: “While Stone’s performs exceptionally well throughout the winter and Christmas, there is a fantastic opportunity to drive the brand forward and boost awareness throughout the summer season.” Tel: Accolade Wines (01483) 690000.
Cash & Carry Management
• April 2012 • 17
Surviving hard times Human resources expert Cate Ritchie (right) considers alternatives to redundancy. In the face of severe trading conditions, businesses often feel that there is no choice but to effect redundancies. But there are other ways. Apart from the time and effort required to carry out a fair redundancy process, there is also the risk of costly litigation if things go wrong. 1. Recruitment freeze For a fixed period of time, recognise that you need to stop employing staff – even replacements. This can hit the organisation hard but also generates innovative responses to old problems and encourages all staff to consider ways to cover roles. 2. Salary cut or freeze This is always difficult to sell to staff but can be an effective method of saving necessary costs. Employees should (in theory!) value job security over a pay increase. This can only be done following proper consultation as it will fundamentally alter employees’ terms of employment. 3. Short-time working or lay off Again, this option involves a potential change to terms of employment, so consultation with affected employees is essential. An employer can ask employees to agree to a temporary change in working hours or rely upon a term in employees’ contracts which reserves the right to change employees’ hours or temporarily lay off employees. Even if the terms reserve a right for employers to make these changes, employees should be consulted about any proposed changes.
ADDITIONAL BANK HOLIDAY Q:
We understand that to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee there will be an additional bank holiday on Tuesday 5 June 2012. Do I have to give all employees this as a day off?
There is no statutory right to any bank or public holiday and this announcement does not increase any entitlement. Whether an employee will benefit from the extra holiday will be entirely dependent on their contract, and the discretion of their employer. For example, a contract which entitles a worker to 20 days’ annual leave in addition to all statutory, bank and public holidays, would be likely to result in the worker being granted an extra day’s paid holiday but a contract where public holidays are stated does not require that the additional holiday is granted. Planning and good communications regarding the additional holiday will reduce the risk of absenteeism and other issues arising.
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
4. Flexible working From time to time an employer may receive applications from staff asking for flexible working. This must be a formally agreed arrangement where a defined procedure is followed and eligibility criteria are fulfilled. Allowing employees to work flexibly could be the answer to reducing payroll costs, so it is worth taking these requests seriously. 5. Secondments Another way for a business to reduce the cost to the business is to second them to an alternative company, perhaps a client or associated business. Any employer considering this type of arrangement should make sure that there is a formal agreement with the business and the employee. If the arrangement is not formalised, the employer could be seen to be acting as an employment agency – and so could become tied up in the Agency Worker Regulations which place certain obligations upon both the employer and the end user. 6. Redeployment Redeployment can be useful in covering areas of the company where staff are needed to cover a busy spell, or perhaps a period of leave. This will help keep employees motivated and benefits the business too. Once again though, any arrangement involving a change to the employees’ normal working terms should be formally discussed with them, and confirmed in writing. If you wish to talk to Cate about these options or any other HR issue, contact her at email@example.com or phone (0792) 121 3890.
Family favourites Swizzels Matlow has become a successful business by concentrating on what it does best, as Mervyn Gilbert finds out. Back in the ’90s, Swizzels Matlow decided to end its 30 yearmix cocktails. That’s how it happened,” says Dee. plus diversification into chocolate-coated Brazils. Cynics said The company aims to cash in on the fever that will grip they were nuts for going off at a tangent, while commercial the nation when the major sporting events and Queen’s director Jeremy Dee admits: “It was okay for a while, but we Diamond Jubilee take place. Football themed bags and were not quite efficient enough.” Union Jack style packaging will proliferate. Who knows how its long-term association with chocolate Three styles of price-marked packs at £1 are available might have affected its dominance in kids sweets? and the company last year formed a licensing agreement to As it is, the company has sell sweets with packaging returned to its traditions, featuring the Scooby Doo bringing it annual turnover of character. around £50m. “And we are This type of strategy was profitable,” Dee insists. extended when it began sellThree of the four categories ing products with the Vimto are showing increased sales – and Tango names. compressed fizzy sweets (up Another innovation is 31%) variety bags (18%) and Squashies, a range of soft lollipops (6%). But chews are fruit-flavoured gums, while for static. Christmas the producer will be Seasonal trade plays a big unveiling its first 750g gift tin. part in Swizzels Matlow’s for“We have come a long way tunes. Halloween, for instance, from brown bags to shelfis showing 16.7% year-on-year ready packaging,” says Dee. growth, accounting for retail “Retailers want to see what’s sales of £9.8m. in the pack. Dee’s role is largely to “We’re No.1 in most of the develop the export side of the sectors in which we operate. I business, which accounts for suppose Barratt and Bassetts 20% of sales. Children in are our main competition.” Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Advertising plays little part Norway and Sweden are suckin the manufacturer’s marketers for the producer’s sweets. ing package; promotions, Made and packed at the point-of-sale and social media Sweet returns for Jeremy Dee and his fellow directors High Peak, Derbyshire, factory, form the main thrust. at Swizzels Matlow. where 550 are employed, Dee adds: “We are also products with such names as constantly promoting within Love Hearts, Drumstick Lollies, New Refreshers, Parma the C&C/wholesale trade, through which we do regular mailViolets, Fizzers, Double Lollies, Rainbow Drops, Double Dips outs with ‘deep cut’ and ‘extra fill’. We also take part in trade and Fun Games are transported to a holding depot at nearby days. Adlington, where they are distributed around the country by “We’ll be exhibiting at Palmer & Harvey’s Pro-retail show a third-party haulier or collected by customers. and at the Nisa/Today’s event in Stoneleigh. We have also Says Dee: “The C&C/wholesale channel accounts for taken a stand at ISM in Cologne ever since the candy show around half of our UK business (retail multiples the other was established.” half). C&C/wholesale used to be bigger when there were Raw material prices can be a nightmare. Says Dee: “We more independents around. source a large amount of sugar from abroad and have been “We cover the whole C&C/wholesale trade and only hit by the situation in China and India, where sugar needs produce under our brands.” have gone through the roof. Dee is one of seven directors, his father Michael being “We’re very much dependent on cane imports, but we joint managing director. Also on the board are members of also use UK-produced beet sugar. Prices have shot up by the Matlow family, including Trevor Matlow, the other joint 60% over the past year. Gelatine prices have also risen md. The two ‘clans’ established the business in 1933. sharply. So where does the Swizzels name come from? “We try very hard to make efficiencies, but sometimes “One of the wives, referring to the effervescent nature of price wins.” some of the products, likened them to swizzel sticks used to Tel: Swizzels Matlow (01663) 744144.
Cash & Carry Management
• April 2012 • 19
Bags more innovation The current value of the confectionery market is £4.64bn, of which chocolate accounts for £3.33bn, sugar £1.07bn and gum £244m (Nielsen MAT 10/3/12). Over the past year Kraft Foods has unveiled some major Fans have the chance to win one of 100,000 official spedevelopments, including the addition of The Natural cial edition shirts, while C&C/wholesalers are being advised Confectionery Company’s Guzzle Puzzle, Cadbury Twirl Bites, to get behind the campaign in-depot. Bitsa Wispa and Cadbury Dairy Milk Bubbly. Trade communications manager Bep Dhaliwal says: “The And Cadbury, the official treat provider at the London category offers unrivalled sales opportunities for C&C/whole2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, continsalers if they take advantage of the insight ues to run its Spots vs Stripes campaign, and range advice that is available to them. supporting Team GB. “Chocolate is still very much an affordKraft Foods trade communications manable treat, with low price points and a feelager Susan Nash says: “The chocolate bags good factor. The bars segment alone has sector is performing very well, experiencing seen strong performance over the last 4.7% growth, and Cadbury branded chocoyear, with growth of 4.7%.” late bags alone are worth over £82.4m, As well as best-sellers, C&C/wholeahead of the category at plus 26%. salers are urged to “stock up early on key “Large block chocolate is also a popular impulse purchases and NPD, such as new choice, providing a great opportunity for Galaxy Bubbles Orange and Galaxy sharing with friends and family. Cadbury Flutes, which retailers will be looking out branded total large block chocolate is for in-depot.” worth £172m.” The on-pack promotion is encouragThe Natural Confectionery Company’s ing supporters to ‘Play Their Part for new Guzzle Puzzle has turned over England’. The prize football shirts will be £2.8m since its launch in July, and early delivered to consumers who have this year saw the introduction of entered a winning code via text or Cadbury Dairy Milk Bubbly, a large tablet online. made with aerated CDM chocolate, but The activity is being supported by a in a creative new mould produced out of £4.3m expenditure covering tv advertisAnother Kraft/Cadbury innovation. bubbles. ing, PR and digital activity, representing Another newcomer, Cadbury Bitsa Wispa, contains tiny a 70% increase on the outlay for the Mars 2010 World Cup versions of Cadbury Wispa chocolate in a resealable sharing campaign. format. The total Wispa brand will benefit from a £3.5m Promotions are being launched this month, and the marketing investment in 2012. tagline ‘Work Rest Play’ has been relaunched as ‘Work Rest Says Nash: “Our range of Cadbury branded bags has Play Your Part’. something to suit an array of different tastes. The bitesize range (Cadbury Dairy Milk Giant Buttons, Caramel Nibbles, Crunchie Rocks, Cadbury Clusters, Cadbury Raisins, Cadbury Limited-edition Galaxy Flutes comprise two crispy wafer Peanuts and now Cadbury Twirl Bites and Cadbury Bitsa fingers filled with a creamy chocolate centre and dipped in Wispa) is perfect for sharing. The large, resealable pouches milk chocolate. offer a variety of different textures and ingredients coated in Early this year, actresses Joan Collins and Stephanie Cadbury chocolate.” Beacham reunited in a new advertising drive for the Snickers A television commercial for Cadbury Dairy Milk Bubbly – brand, sales of which grew by 26% last year, increasing its featuring the Joyville theme – is part of a £6m drive, includvalue to £62.7m. ing more tv, outdoor ads, PR, experiential and digital activity. The ads, which featured the slogan ‘You’re Not You When The Joyville idea was also brought to life recently through You’re Hungry’, saw the duo posing as footballers in a posta giant musical chocolate fountain at the London Westfield match locker room. The campaign is being supported by an and Birmingham Bullring shopping centres. All data AC Nielsen. £8.1m media expenditure. Says Dhaliwal: “Some 72% of retailers visit their cash & carry for confectionery purchases and 69% interviewed revealed they are making more frequent visits than 12-18 Mars points to the major events taking place this year that months ago (him!). will have an impact on the trade, making particular reference “We advise C&C/wholesalers to lead their display using to the European football competition, in association with the direction of traffic flow with the category with the highest which the supplier is running an on-pack promotion. penetration.
Effect of events
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
confectionery levels will be increased this year. Recent marketing activity included Kinder Bueno reappearing on tv with a humorous new commercial, using the strapline ‘Indulgence, lightly done’, supported by a ‘try me free’ on-pack promotion. It resulted in sales of Classic Limited-edition product from Mars Confectionery. Bueno rising by 17% year on year (IRI/Ultralysis). “Signpost brands at both entry and exit to ‘book end’ Kinder Surprise was also back on tv in the four weeks the category and drive footfall in the aisle.” before Easter, with the brand introducing new toys. Dhaliwal adds: “With recent research showing that 70% Boorer says: “Kinder Surprise continues to go from of retailers are not shopping to a budget, there are opportustrength to strength. The last burst of advertising had a nities for C&C/wholesalers to increase their sales by creating positive impact on base sales and we expect to replicate this an impactful display, using techniques to ‘disrupt’ retailers. success.” “Always create an exciting area in-depot to add theatre He adds that kids confectionery continues to be an area of when showcasing NPD and make the most of manufacturers’ growth, the category rising by 8.5% to be valued at over advice to achieve impactful displays.” £900m by the end of 2011. All data IRI 2011 except where shown. Boorer also stresses the importance of retailers stocking Ferrero Rocher and Ferrero Collection. “C&C/wholesalers should encourage retailers with limited space to stock Ferrero Rocher 16-pack and 24-pack, as well At Ferrero UK, customer development director Levi Boorer as Ferrero Collection 32-pack, as these are the best-sellers in says the company’s brands have been doing particularly well the range, and are ideal for both gifting and special sharing.” All data AC Nielsen except where shown. in the impulse channel. “Our star performers include Kinder Kids, with 7% growth year on year (Synovate), and Kinder Bueno, up 3%. Ferrero Rocher remains the UK’s No.1 gifting brand, and Ferrero Collection is hot on its heels as the UK’s No.2 premium gifting brand.” Kinder Chocolate is appearing on tv for the first time this month in a multi-million-pound, seven-week campaign featuring the strapline: ‘Invented for kids. Approved by mums’. The advertising coincides with the launch of a pricemarked pack. The product will feature a £1 flash on its eightpack of chocolate bars from the end of May until the end of July. A 20p price-marked pack will also be available on single Kinder Chocolate bars from selected C&C/wholesalers. Boorer’s colleague Jason Sutherland, UK sales director, comments: “We have ambitious plans to double the size of our UK business in the next five years and will be investing heavily in category-leading support on tv and in-store, alongside relevant NPD and clear merchandising Walker’s Nonsuch, which calls itself ‘England’s finest toffee advice to deliver this. maker’ has launched a limited-edition 200g Duo Hammer The C&C/wholesale Pack for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the London channel will be key to Olympics. It carries the Union Jack emblem. us achieving these Each pack contains a bar of Original Creamy and Brazil goals.” Nut toffee, together with a small hammer. For novice ‘toffoHeavy tv advertisholics’ there are instructions on how to break the treat into ing meant that Ferrero pieces. Rocher had the ‘No.1 The design is printed on a removable sleeve which share of voice in food’ unveils the Walker’s pack. over the four weeks Says a company spokesman: “Walker’s Nonsuch remains to Christmas, and was an independent family business which was established in the second only to Cocalate 19th century, so we have every reason to be flying the Cola in terms of total Union Jack!” food & drink media Made to a secret recipe, the toffee contains no artificial spend. The company A favourite with kids. colours, preservatives, or hydrogenated vegetable oils. reports that investment
‘Best of British’ toffee
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
SOFT DRINKS The May 2012 issue of Cash & Carry Management will include a feature on Soft Drinks
To advertise in this issue, contact David Ford on (01342) 712100
confectionery 5 Gum is claimed to be worth £7.3m and is growing at 24.7% (net sales value). Two months ago the manufacturer launched ‘What’s Next?’ – a targeted and interactive promotion to build on 5 Gum’s recent growth. Running for five months, it offers consumers the chance to win a selection of prizes from the worlds of fashion, art, music, game and film. A return to television for Extra forms part of a multimillion pound investment for the brand this year, with appearances on tv for 27 weeks. Available in cash & carries from this month are pricemarked versions of selected packs of Extra, Starburst and Skittles. All data Nielsen MAT to 31/12/11 unless shown.
‘Strong’ in C&C/wholesale Duncan McCulloch, Wrigley sales director, says the company’s range of gum and sugar brands are achieving strong performances in the C&C/wholesale channel. “Sugar confectionery is a highly expandable category and represents a fantastic opportunity for retailers. Skittles is performing tremendously well, and is the fastest growing major fruit confectionery brand, with sales up 50% on last year. “Starburst follows Skittles as the second biggest brand in fruit chews and this year will see its highest level of investment since Wrigley took ownership of the brand. With new packaging and tv advertising that encourages consumers to let their Starburst out, we anticipate rapid growth for Starburst in 2012.” McCulloch adds that Skittles occupies fourth position in fruit confectionery and Starburst sixth place. “Skittles is the fastest growing major fruit confectionery brand, worth £9.7m to independents and symbols and growing at 15.4% year on year within these channels.” He adds that Starburst is worth £7.2m to independents and symbols. The brand’s new ‘Unwrap Your Playful Side’ positioning is being brought to life with a £2m tv campaign, with support from on-pack and instore activity. The gum category, in which Wrigley dominates, is worth £83.7m to independents and symbols and is growing at 3.3% year on year. The manufacturer’s Extra brand is alone worth £48.5m in these two channels and is growing at 11.1%. In January, Extra Strawberry was introduced. It is being supported in cash & carries with impactful PoS material, including a branded shipper, pallet wrap, 3D totems, bus stops and 3D cubes. In the same month, Wrigley launched a new sour-tosweet citrus pear flavour for its 5 range of gum – 5 Evolution. It, too, is appearing in C&Cs with a range of PoS material.
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
Marketing director of Tangerine Confectionery Alison Brand says the company recently introduced a new Max Chew range to Barratt’s single chew bars. “This is a key initiative for us as it allows our consumers the choice of two different sizes of their favourite Barratt chew bars, coupled with a great value proposition.” She adds: “Over the past few months we have acquired a number of key brands, which are set to enhance our position.” Two additions, Smith Kendon and York Fruits, are said to have ‘consolidated Tangerine’s position as market leader in fruit flavoured jellies’. The acquisitions are part of an ongoing strategy for the manufacturer, which has seen its turnover quadruple to more than £160m in the last six years. Says Brand: “We also recently acquired the iconic Wham and Highland Toffee brands which are set to relaunch this spring. The Wham Chews brand has been a firm favourite for over 25 years, retaining strong appeal for adults and kids. “Tangerine now has six out of the top 10 chew bar brands, expanding a category-leading portfolio which includes Barratt Refreshers, Sherbet Dip Dabs, Sherbet Fountains, Black Jacks and Fruit Salads. “In addition, we are launching two new ranges from our trusted Barratt brand this month with Barratt British Mix, consisting of fruity soft gums in British themed shapes, and Barratt Alley Cats and Hound Dogs – a fun new variety combining foam and fruit flavour gums. “C&C/wholesalers are hugely important to us, accounting for a large proportion of our business. We strive to support them in all ways possible.” Brand concludes: “Barratt, Butterkist, Taveners, Princess and Henry Goode have all had a great year.”
For further information: Ferrero UK (01923) 690300 Kraft/Cadbury (08702) 400861 Mars Chocolate (01844) 262517 Tangerine Confectionery (01253) 761201 Walker’s Nonsuch (01782) 321525 Wrigley (01752) 752094
NEW prod u for 2 cts 012
NEW range of Licensed Products
Building on our position as No 1 chew bar manufacturer* Vimto brand worth ÂŁ56m Massive ÂŁ6m marketing spend
Tango brand growing 17% YOY in impulse
NEW range of Multipacks
Offering consumers excellent value for money
*Nielsen 52 week unit sales to 07.01.12
Cash & Carry Managementâ€™s Top 25 Suppliers awards for 2012 begin soon
Not your usual awards lunch Comments on last yearâ€™s event...
â€œI really did enjoy the awards at Dorney Lake and found the day very worthwhile. The awards themselves were swift and the Dhamecha presentation highlighted information that we will pass on to our members. It was a great venue and good to learn about the planning going into hosting an Olympic venue. I gained the most benefit from listening to the speaker from the Olympics organising committee who was very interesting from both a personal and business perspective.â€? Tom Gittins, business development manager, Confex
was really â€œThe event welcomed good and I e we had the free tim holesalers with the w rs to and supplie ns and discuss pla sight. The market fore ere also speakers w cha.â€? dip Dhame ra P y rl la u c good, par ti gbin, o r, Richard H ent manage m p lo e v e d r custome Drinks Britvic Soft
â€œYour awards are genuinely one of the best around and I think this is down to the intimate nature of a relatively small gathering, the informal but professional tone, and the special location â€“ certainly not the norm. Also, the ambience is friendly and approachable, it is a good networking opportunity, the speakers are really excellent, and the time of day (lunch) makes it much more manageable than another evening gig.â€? Stephen Moodie, customer director convenience, Unilever
â€œGreat ven ue, great speakers, w ith a passion an d message .I thoroughly enjoyed the balance be tween awards and speakers. Good news stor y in hard times .â€? Nigel Milwa rd, C&C â€“ im pulse mana ger, PLB Group
! " # # !$%& '
Dogs lead the way According to the Pet Food Manufacturers Association, 22% of UK households own a dog, 18% a cat, and 9% have indoor fish. For dogs, in 2010 the dry complete segment was valued at £483m (up 2%), wet food £325m (static), treats £223m (4% higher) and mixers £26m (down 3%). For cats, wet single-serve food was worth £480m (up 1%), wet multiserve £150m (down 5%), dry complete £232m (4% growth) and treats £43m (up 19%). With innovation playing a major part in the petcare sector, Mars Petcare has embarked on a programme of new lines and extensions for 2012. Strategic insights & category leader Camilla Kimpton says: “We know that variety and NPD are essential to driving consumer purchasing and overall category value. “The latest data shows that, compared to other grocery categories, new lines in petcare are more likely to increase sales compared to existing products.” The company is encouraging C&C/wholesalers to stock up on brands which retailers and shoppers know and trust, such as its Pedigree, Whiskas, Sheba and Cesar, as highlighted by their recent inclusion in the Wide range for cats. top 500 of the 2012 Consumer Superbrands report. Referring to cat & dog treats, Kimpton comments: “Even though space is at a premium for C&C/wholesalers, retailers will recognise the benefits of siting treats at the till point to unlock greater basket spend and encourage lastminute purchase decisions. “Mars has some of the leading brands in the care & treats category for both cats and dogs.” Pedigree has launched three new canned recipes – with fish oil, marrowbone and wholegrain. Fish oil helps to encourage supple joints, while marrowbone assists in developing strong bones. Wholegrain (and taurine) are claimed to help promote a good digestive system and maintain a healthy heart. Another Pedigree product, Puppy DentaTubos, is aimed at good oral care routine from an early age, while DentaStix, which is vet recommended, is designed to prevent tartar build-up.
For cats, Whiskas Tasty Textures Bite ‘N’ Chew comes in pouches with roughly chopped meaty pieces in a soft pâté that maximises bite and chew satisfaction. The new range is available in two single varieties – chicken and salmon (rsp 42p), as well as three 12-pouch packs in mixed, fish and meat styles (£4.49). Kimpton says that consumers purchase more than 10 varieties of cat food on a regular basis. “Whiskas Tasty Textures Bite ‘N’ Chew responds to this consumer demand for a broad range of textures and flavours in a product that cats will love getting their teeth into.” The Sheba singles range was recently extended with salmon, tuna and turkey, joining the existing chicken and beef varieties, all with an rsp of 50p. Dreamies, ‘a distinctive and fun product’, comprises crunchy squares filled with soft centres. The flavours include beef, cheese and duck. The new Dreamies Mix range is a three-tier combination of Dreamies with cheese & beef, chicken & duck and salmon & cheese. And joining the singles selection is a new turkey flavour. Back to dogs, Misfits treats come in five varieties: Wonky Chomp, Scruffy Bites, Nasher Sticks, Ruff Rips and Tangly Twists. And from June, Wonky Chomps and Nasher Sticks will be available in three sizes – small, medium and large – and a new treat will be added, Motley Mixes, a combination of prawn and beef flavoured bites.
C-stores and specialists Batleys, part of Bestway Group, is in the enviable position of being able to offer a wide range of pet products not only to convenience stores, but also to specialist pet retailers. Senior buyer Peter Brame explains: “Our specialist Bestpets division operates at 20 Batleys sites. In some cases they are stand-alone units while in others they are contained within the actual cash & carries. “The most recent to open were Bristol in 2008 and then Luton a year later. “In addition, we sell petfood and products in the grocery sections of the C&Cs. We have also been delivering since 2005 and now have around 35 vehicles on the road.”
Delivery service as well as cash & carry.
Cash & Carry Management
• April 2012 • 27
Are you attracting the big spenders? There are approximately 17 million cats and dogs in the UK. Pet food sales are worth over £2bn, meaning that it is worth more as a category than breakfast cereals, crisps and baby products to mention just a few. £2236 per year pet food shopper1 £1460 per year
non pet food shopper1
owners visit a convenience store. The pet food shopper is a very important shopper to have in your store, spending over 50% more than the average shopper. However the survey has shown that nearly a quarter of pet owners shopping in convenience stores do not even realize that the shop sells pet food. When choosing your petfood range remember to proportion the space you give to each product type relative to it’s share of sales in the market. For example on a typical convenience fixture we would recommend that you give cat pouch 22% of the total space available. It is also important to ensure you are stocking the best selling products to enable more customers to buy the product they are looking for.
Pet food shoppers on average spend over 50% more1
With 56% of households in the UK owning a pet (40% own a cat or dog) it is important to make sure that you have the best range available in your store to maximize profits. A recent survey has shown that shopping for pet food is the third most important reason that pet
KEY PETFOOD TRENDS
of pet shoppers are
The products that people buy have changed over the years, and it is important to keep up with the latest trends.
NOT AWARE you sell pet food
Dog & cat treats:
If we converted one
Category worth over £250m and in 2011 generated 46% of all pet food growth.*
third of these shoppers this could mean an extra
Cat pouch: Sales of cat pouches are now worth over £500m in the UK and growing by 3%, they have overtaken the sales of can cat food which are declining by 6%.*
per average store per year 3
Super premium cat food: Category is growing by 9% and is now worth over £100m.*
Dog can: Category worth over £200m and is responsible for 15% of pet food sales in the UK. It is important to stock a multipack range as well as a single can range so you are giving shoppers the option to top up or purchase their usual pack.*
Our love of Pets translates into high spend and a valuable category
TAKE HOME SAVOURIES
Dry cat food
Category is currently growing by 3%, is responsible for nearly 10% of petfood sales in the UK and is worth £150m.*
Dry dog food Currently worth over £175m and growing by nearly 4% per year.* *Source : IRI Infoscan Grocery Outlets MAT 2012
Stock the right cat & dog Range 1
Recommended CAT range
Recommended DOG range
• • • • • • • • •
• • • • • • • • •
Whiskas Pouch Fishermans choice 12 x 100g Felix Pouch Fish Selection 12 x 100g Whiskas Pouch Favourites 12 x 100g Go Cat Tuna Herring & Veg complete 375g Whiskas Temptations Chk & Chs treat 60g Whiskas Salmon in Jelly Can 390g Felix Chicken in Jelly Can 390g Catsan Cat Litter 5L Sheba Turkey & Chicken Tray 100g
Source: Mars Small Store research (Sample 5668 customers) 2011
Pedigree Can Jelly 6 x 385g Pedigree Can Original 400g Bakers Complete Beef & Veg 1.5kg Pedigree Dentastix Med 7 stk dog treat Winalot Classics Can Chicken 400g Cesar Turkey & Lamb Tray 150g Pedigree Jumbone Beef Dog treat 200g x 2 piece Bonio Original Biscuits 650g Butchers Can Tripe & Chicken 400g
Source: Mars Petcare Small Store Shopper Research 2011
Source: Retailer A ROS study 2012
Source: Kantar till roll 2011
you want your customers to leave your store empty-handed? Do
73% of shoppers leave the store empty-handed if their preferred product is not available*
Make sure you donâ€™t miss out on this fantastic category. FREE category advice, FREE POS & FREE online resource centre visit:
www.petprofit.co.uk * Source: HIM CTP 2010
pet products Brame says the Bestpets outlets sell products suitable for an extensive variety of pets, including reptiles, aquatic creatures and birds. Customers include privately-owned pet shops, garden centres, kennels and catteries. “Although I cannot comment on the opening of any new depots,” says Brame, “we will certainly be sharpening our offer to make us more customer focused.” He adds: “In our cash & carries, we have a core range of grocery petfoods, the two main players being Mars Petcare and Nestlé Purina. Butchers is also also a major supplier. “In catfood, Mars’ Whiskas and Nestlé Purina’s Felix and GoCat are the leaders, while in dog food Mars’ Pedigree range is phenomenally big as is Nestlé Purina’s Bakers. Other big sellers include Butchers and Wagg.”
Importance of merchandising Andrew Harding, market development organisation director at Nestlé Purina, says that, because pet owners are an important shopper group within the convenience sector, stocking and merchandising pet food sections effectively can directly improve profitability. “On average, pet food shoppers visit their local c-store once a week more than shoppers that don’t buy pet food – and they spend 70% more (source: him!). “While nearly £195m million worth of pet food was sold in the convenience sector in the last 12 months (IRI total convenience February 2012), the stores need to ensure they are stocking key products and displaying them effectively.” Harding adds that there are 17 million cats and dogs in the UK, their owners being particular about the food they buy. And they are “incredibly loyal” to their preferred brand, flavour and format (Katar Worldpanel December 2011). “If a product is unavailable, 73% will leave the store without an alternative, potentially taking the rest of their basket spend with them (him!).” Although the economic climate remains tough, owners are unwilling to trade down on their pet food purchases, preferring to prioritise their pets’ happiness. Says Harding: “Our research found that, in general terms, the small number of consumers that are trading down (12%) is cancelled out by the number trading up to higher value pet foods – 11% (Millward Brown February 2012).
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
“Cat owners are switching from traditional multi-serve cans to single-serve pouches and foils, with more than 350,000 shoppers stopping buying cans in the last year alone (Kantar Worldpanel). “Single-serve sales are up by 5.8%, putting market value at £59m – more than twice that of multi-serve at £23m, which is declining by 4.1% a year (IRI). Single-serve cat products are worth £514m at MAT in the total grocery market.” Sales of luxury cat food last year rose by 23% (IRI) to £107m. Nestlé Purina’s Gourmet is valued at £6.9m in the convenience sector, with opportunity for growth through a wide variety of flavours, singles and multipacks (IRI). The largest selling product of any complete dog food packs – a segment worth £203m – is claimed to be Bakers Complete Chicken & Rice (1.5kg box). Harding comments: “The convenience sector is yet to fully maximise on the opportunity available from the dog treats trend. Sales are up 3.4% a year in this channel at £19m, but in total grocery the market is worth more than £205m (IRI). “To maximise the opportunity, retailers need to stock a well balanced range of products that pick up on the different reasons that shoppers buy dog treats. These include the desire to feed tasty meaty treats (like Bakers Rewards), treats with specific health benefits, such as Bakers Dental Delicious, and treats that are complementary to meal times, like Bonio biscuits. “We also found that many retailers may be prioritising less well-performing brands due to confusion over what is the top selling brand. Some 36% were unaware that Go-Cat is a market leader, having easily the largest share of the market (68.5%) in convenience and 51.8% of the total (IRI).” Harding says that although Felix Single Serve Pouch is the market leader, with 41.1% in convenience and 35.1% of the total sector (IRI), “56% of convenience retailers do not site it as ‘market leading’.” Another leading company brand is Winalot, which he claims to be the second largest wet dog food brand, worth more than £8.4 million (IRI) with 17% of the convenience trade and 13.2% of the total market. “The brand continues to perform exceptionally well, growing by 6.9% year on year in convenience.” Harding gives this advice: A good range of cat and dog food will help maximise sales. However, merchandising the product is equally important. Brand block within segments, such as complete dry dog food and single-serve cat food, to create standout and make the fixture easy to navigate. Place sub-categories separately. Put must-buy products, such as Go-Cat, Felix and Bakers, at just below eye level. Use PoS to help shoppers navigate the store and fixture.
• • • • •
For further information: Batleys (01484) 481150 Mars Petcare (0800) 738800 Nestlé Purina (0800) 212161
Cash & Carry Managementâ€™s Top 25 Suppliers awards begin soon. Are you ready?
Last yearâ€™s winners are pictured with Martin Lovell (second on left), publishing director of Cash & Carry Management, at Dorney Lake, the setting for the 2011 Top 25 Suppliers awards lunch and the rowing venue for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
FREE JOB ADS FOR C&C/WHOLESALERS Struggling to get the right candidate for your job vacancy? Reach every cash & carry and delivered wholesaler in the UK free of charge
Visit the website or contact Martin Lovell at firstname.lastname@example.org or 01342 712100
Ambitious growth strategy People are still eating out, but not in such great numbers, so deals to keep consumers interested are now the norm. Eating in and on the hoof are proving tough competitors. Kepak Convenience Foods plans to double the size of its £105m microwavable snacking business in five years. The ambitious programme is linked to the fact that many young adults are spending more time at home in the evening, eating hot snacking products while watching tv, playing computer games or just spending time online. Convenience business unit controller Angela Daulby says: “They want tasty, filling snacks that don’t interrupt what they’re doing. One of the advantages of our products is that they can be cooked in less time than it takes to boil a kettle.” At the heart of KCF’s programme is the unveiling of new category definition, ‘Quick and Tasty Snacks and Meals’. This covers all single-serve chilled snacks and meals that can be eaten hot, on the go or in the home. It is claimed to be a segment that over 70% of shoppers patronise. Marketing director John Armstrong says: “We have spent a lot of time researching the new category definitions which take the broadest possible view of chilled, single-serve snacks and meals. “It includes products that complement our hot snacking range such as pies, pasties and soups.” Kepak’s research highlighted that there are two types of store offering ‘Quick and Tasty Snacks and Meals’ – those providing ‘Food For Now’ and others offering ‘Food For Later’. The location of the ‘Quick and Tasty Snacks and Meals’ fixture differs by store type, with the supplier providing dedicated merchandising advice for both ‘Food For Now’ and ‘Food For Later’ outlets. In trials, c-store retailers who worked with Kepak, defining their store as ‘Food For Now’ or ‘Food For Later’, and listing the best-selling lines in the right location, increased sales of
chilled snacking products by an average of 30%. “This is all about improving the customer’s shopping experience by tailoring retailers’ chilled snacking offering to a shopper’s needs. But this will, of course, differ from store to store,” says Armstrong. “That’s why we’ll be working closely with retailers and, hopefully, other chilled snacking manufacturers, to help retailers define their store type and then maximise profits.” In order to accelerate its own growth, KCF will also be focusing on a business model that develops its market-leading product range through three ‘I’s – Investment, Insight and Innovation. Armstrong comments: “We invest heavily in our brands compared to industry norms and have backed them with tv advertising for each of the last 10 years – even in recessionary times when many other grocery brands have shied away from tv support. That will not change, and we have some really exciting brand support plans for 2012. “We’re mapping current and future trends in consumers’ shopping and eating habits. We’re also looking closely at wider social change, ie the rise of single person households and meal occasions and the positive impact this has on the ‘Quick and Tasty Snacks and Meals’ category.” KCF will maintain its focus on NPD and marketing support, continuing to take the most successful foodservice concepts into retail. The policy has worked well so far, in particular with the recent launch of Rustlers Hot Subs and Hot Wraps and the ZUGO’s Deli Café Panini and pasta range. It also intends to continue to add value with initiatives such as pre-programmed microwaves, enabling retailers to offer hot food in-store and purpose-built stands. “Working closely with the convenience trade, we’re
Some of the major players in the range from Kepak Convenience Foods.
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
eating in now poised to accelerate the growth of ‘Quick and Tasty Snacks and Meals’, generating increased profits for retailers in what we predict will be the most dynamic sector of the food to go market in the coming years,” Armstrong concludes.
Friendly persuasion KCF has secured a deal to sponsor US sitcom Friends on TV channel Comedy Central. Starting this month, it will run until September, highlighting the company’s commitment to invest in its brands. The programme, following the lives of six ‘20-somethings’ in New York, has been on UK television since 1995. Says Armstrong: “Everyone loves watching Friends, even after so many years on tv here. It is a fantastic coup for the Comedy Channel, which has seen its ratings rise by 22% since it started screening the sitcom. “The audience demographic of the show fits with our brand, allowing us to introduce ZUGO’s Deli Café to even more of our target audience.”
Less food waste According to Angus Peterson, general marketing manager of Birds Eye, the frozen food sector has received a “real boost over the last few years”. He adds that, besides offering convenience, frozen foods can also provide a range of products suitable for cosy nights in or a friendly gathering. They also help limit food waste. The manufacturer has a list of ‘old favourites’ as well as new products which complement staying at home, such as the Bake to Perfection and Restaurant Favourites ranges. “Shoppers hosting gatherings and parties to celebrate upcoming events such as the Diamond Jubilee and summer sport occasions will be looking to maximise their budgets, so there is even more potential to drive sales in frozen. “The category is a huge opportunity for retailers to bring in additional sales from shoppers looking for home-dining solutions that are a bit more special. “Retailers should always keep a good stock of trusted brands, such as Birds Eye, to help attract shoppers to the freezer cabinets. They should also make sure key lines and popular favourites are visible so consumers can make quick decisions. This will also encourage repeat purchase.” Peterson adds: “The big night in trend is likely to continue to grow, particularly with popular television shows such as The X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent bringing people together for mass viewings. “Birds Eye offers some great innovative meal solutions which are easy to prepare for hungry crowds before settling down in front of the tv with a bag of popcorn.” Last year the company introduced two new recipes to the Bake to Perfection range: Cod Fillets with Olive Oil, Rosemary & Tomato, and Haddock Fillets with White Wine, Wholegrain Mustard & Spring Onion.
• Cash & Carry Management • April 2012
One of two fish dishes introduced last year.
Each is easy to prepare: consumers only need to take the fillets from the freezer, pop them in the oven for 25 minutes and the baking bag does the rest. Says Peterson: “Our Bake to Perfection range benefits from its premium positioning so consumers don’t have to compromise on quality. We’ve also ensured each product is quick and easy to prepare, which means consumers can spend more time with their family and friends rather than being stuck in the kitchen.” Also last year, Birds Eye launched Rice Fusions – individual portions of rice and vegetables infused with herbs and spices contained in a ‘pyramid steamer’ bag.
Quick preparation The bags are popped into the microwave for just three minutes, producing a fluffy rice product. The four variants are: Mediterranean Vegetable, Egg Fried Rice with Peas, Pilau with Peas & Spinach and Country Mushroom. Another recent addition to the portfolio is the Restaurant Favourites selection. The three varieties are: Hunters Chicken, Flamin’ Hot BBQ and Sweet Korma. Each combines two chicken breasts with a marinade, the cooking time being just 35 minutes. Peterson comments: “Grouping products by meal occasion, such as a big night in, will make it easier for shoppers to make quick and informed decisions. “Promotional link-ups which offer consumers everything they need to make their evening a success, such as drinks and snacks, will save them from trawling the aisles and really maximise sales, as well as bring further excitement to the frozen category.”
For further information: Birds Eye (0871) 426 0023 Kepak Convenience Foods (01772) 688300
SCOTTISH WHOLESALE ASSOCIATION Annual Conference 2012 • 14-17 June • Crieff Hydro
The Scottish Wholesale Association invites you to attend its annual conference at ‘Scotland’s leading leisure resort’, Crieff Hydro, Perthshire.
PROGRAMME OF EVENTS
As always, an outstanding business programme has been put together.
Thursday 14 June 7.30pm Informal Dinner
The conference is also about having fun – there is a programme of activities for all the family.
Friday 15 June 10.30am ‘An Audience with principals of DCS (members only) 11.45am AGM (members only) 12.00pm Lunch 1.15pm Business Session Evening ‘Aussie Barbie’ fancy dress evening
Gold Package Attend the conference from Friday to Sunday Delegate rate per couple: £1,100 Single delegate rate: £840; partner: £260 Silver Package Attend the conference from Friday to Saturday or Saturday to Sunday Delegate rate per couple: £895 Single delegate rate: £735; partner: £160 Option to stay on Thursday evening: £105 DBB; partner: £55 Children aged 3-16 (sharing with parents in family room): £40 per night Children aged 2 and under: free
Saturday 16 June 9.15am Business Session Afternoon Leisure activities Evening Formal Highland Banquet followed by Champagne Breakfast (1.30am on Sunday) Sunday 17 June Breakfast and depart
All prices exclusive of VAT
For details contact executive director Kate Salmon www.scottishwholesale.co.uk • tel: 0131 556 8753 • fax: 0131 558 1623
What have they all got in common?
Ask Next time you pick up a successful brand in household and personal care products it’s a fair bet it came from Robert Mcbride Ltd. That’s because we are the clear leader in the sector at over twice the size of our nearest rival. We supply over 90% of Europe’s leading retailers with our products; we have our own portfolio of brands; and we contract manufacture. We fill 100 million bottles of bleach a year from our Middleton factory alone. Any brand can claim to be a top seller, but nobody knows the market quite like we do. So if you want to know what’s real value and what isn’t, what will sell and what won’t, ask Mcbride. www.mcbride.co.uk