SPOTLIGHT: CHRIS GALLACHER, UNITED WHOLESALE
THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR CASH & CARRY/DELIVERED WHOLESALERS
CCM Chefs’ Own-B Own-Brand rand
Awards Awards 2020 2020
CCM Chefs’ Own-Brand Awards 2020: have you submitted your entry?
GET READY FOR CHANGE Advise customers on upcoming ban of menthol cigarettes
Atif Raza of Bestway in Leeds wins FWD Depot Manager award
Zero Waste to Landfill
Stock up now: email@example.com
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all our readers 06 6
Martin Race is appointed as chairman of Parfetts’ trust board.
Parfetts’ Go Local is top for value in a study of symbol chains.
Country Range MD Coral Rose is to be the FWD’s new chairman.
ESSENTIALS 05 06 19
Editor’s Comment Industry News Products & Promotions
CCM Chefs’ Own-Brand Awards Cash & Carry Management’s awards scheme for 2020 features two new categories: Street Food and Vegan.
FWD Gold Medal Awards Country Range MD Coral Rose is named as the FWD’s new chairman and the organisation announces the winners of its annual awards.
Spotlight featuring Chris Gallacher, managing director of United Wholesale Scotland.
The conclusion from the Caterforce conference was that the group is in an ‘extremely healthy’ position, with each member continuing to grow.
Health, family and work are what matter to Chris Gallacher.
Nestlé Professional introduces a plant-based range.
It is time to change the way data is used and owned in wholesale, argues TWC director Tanya Pepin. 18
Product of the month
In Focus Caterforce is forecasting a combined member turnover of over £600 million by 2021.
CATEGORY INSIGHT 20
Tobacco & Next-Generation Products Update
[ EDITOR’S COMMENT ]
20/20 vision won’t help! n the context of UK business, C&C/wholesale would be viewed by many as a small player, behind the likes of leisure, telecommunications and pharmaceuticals. Yet there is always something happening, although not to the extent of Palmer & Harvey going out of business, Bestway taking over Batleys, and Landmark being merged with Today’s Group to form Unitas Wholesale. This past year has been no exception. On the personnel front, early in 2019 we saw former Landmark, Today’s and Nisa executive Raj Krishan leave Blakemore, where he was wholesale distribution sales director, to join Sugro UK as head of business development under new MD Neil Turton. That job didn’t last long, however, with Krishan moving on to become commercial director of c-store chain Select & Save. Soon after, Andy Cresswell became chief retail officer at Bestway under MD Dawood Pervez, with ex-Landmark MD Martin Williams going to Confex as chairman. Another Bestway appointment was that of Kenton Burchell as trading director – also reporting to Dawood Pervez. Another big name in the trade, Guy Farrant, who joined Booker in 2010 from Marks & Spencer as MD, and became chief operating officer six years later, left the leading C&C/wholesale concern. This long list of key personnel changes includes Ciara McClafferty
SPOTLIGHT: CHRIS GALLACHER, UNITED WHOLESALE
THE BUSINESS MAGAZINE FOR CASH & CARRY/DELIVERED WHOLESALERS
CCM Chefs’ Own-Brand Own-Brand
Awards Awards 2020 2020
CCM Chefs’ Own-Brand Awards 2020: have you submitted your entry?
GET READY FOR CHANGE Advise customers on upcoming ban of menthol cigarettes
Atif Raza of Bestway in Leeds wins FWD Depot Manager award
becoming trading director of Musgrave Wholesale Partners in Ireland; Steve Fox leaving Booker, where he was head of the Premier retail chain, to become MD of forecourt operator MFG (Motor Fuel Group); another former Booker man Chris Gallacher being appointed MD of United Wholesale Scotland; and Tony Holmes leaving Bestway, where he was, successively, sales director and retail director. I could go on – and apologies to those in exalted positions whose names do not appear in this end-of-year column. Please excuse me, too, for not mentioning corporate takeovers and disposals as well as additions to our leading buying and marketing groups. Now we come to next year. Even if I had 20/20 vision I wouldn’t be any better equipped to foresee what developments might take place over the next 12 months. How much greater will Bestway’s retail interests become? Will Unitas Wholesale enlist more non-food specialists? Will Booker hold on to every one of its C&C branches? I refuse to stick my neck out. Instead I will metaphorically thrust forward my right hand to wish all our readers a Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous New Year.
Mervyn Gilbert News Editor
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[ INDUSTRY NEWS ]
Digital workshop Fairway Foodservice held an interactive workshop to enable member wholesalers to achieve their marketing and digital goals in the coming year. The event covered social media, website content and emails. There were also sessions on strategy creation, photography, videos and search engine optimisation. Commenting on the workshop, Laura Foskett, marketing director of Harlech Foodservice, said: “It was a very useful day to sense check where we are with our marketing and communications activity. “It was also incredibly useful to get together with like-minded people.” Richard Ellison, marketing & events manager at Fairway Foodservice, told Cash & Carry Management: “Our ethos is to support our members wherever possible. “We know that digital marketing can be an area that either mystifies people, causes uncertainty or a refresher is needed because it moves so quickly. The feedback has been very positive.” a Fairway Foodservice (01422) 319100
Parfetts’ role for Martin Race Former Bestway Wholesale managing director Martin Race has been named as chairman of Parfetts’ trust board, replacing Graham Nuttall OBE. The employee-owned firm’s board also includes joint MDs Greg Suszczenia and David Grimes, as well as employee-elected members Aaron Forward and Kerry Brennan as chair and vicechair respectively of what is known as the Central Voice. The trust board meets twice a year to review the company’s performance and to be updated on the executive board strategy.
Martin Race, looking ahead.
Before retiring from his role at Bestway a year ago, Race spent 26 years with Batleys, which Bestway took over in 2005. He has also sat on various councils within the Federation of Wholesale Distributors.
Race, commenting on his role at Parfetts, which is for an initial two-year period, said: “This gives me a chance to return, in a small way, to the wholesale sector that I have missed and in a business I have always admired.” Parfetts, which operates seven cash & carries, achieved record results in the year to June, with pre-tax profit growing by 17.5% to £6.1 million on sales up by 9.8% to £380 million (Cash & Carry Management: October). The company is a member of Unitas Wholesale. a Parfetts 0161-429 0429
Brakes steals the show
Brakes was named foodservice supplier of the year at the Quality Food & Drinks Awards for Foodservice event in London. It was one of 12 accolades for the wholesaler, including those for meat & poultry and deli. Brakes was also highly commended in six other categories and commended in five. The company’s head of food & brand Sarah Hartley said: “Our focus puts the customer first, so it was fantastic to win so many awards – not just for our food but also as foodservice supplier of the year.
“This recognises the work that we have undertaken across the business to improve the customer experience, including launching a new website, upgrading logistics, improving our
sustainability credentials and investing in new facilities and technology. “All of this has been done with the support of parent company Sysco.” a Brakes (0345) 606 9090
Fruit Loyalty Club. The scheme, initially in 12 outlets, encourages children to choose a banana, apple, orange or pear instead of confectionery by giving them
a loyalty card that is stamped each time they buy a piece of fruit; the fifth piece of fruit is free of charge. A member of Unitas Wholesale, Filshill supplies
over 185 KeyStore shops across Scotland and the north of England. It also has 1,400 independent delivered customers. a JW Filshill 0141-883 7071
Left to right: Charley Laity and Jo White, Brakes category managers; Alvin Engutsamy, the company’s social channel manager; and event host Sally Phillips.
Children encouraged to eat more fruit
The KeyStore c-store chain, supported by JW Filshill, has joined forces with the Scottish Grocers’ Federation’s Healthy Living Programme to launch the Welby 06
Secrets dispute unresolved Long-running court proceedings involving two former executives of Hyperama, who are alleged to have passed confidential trade information to Bestway, had still not been resolved as Cash & Carry Management went to press. The action concerns exHyperama managing director Aris Poulis and commercial director Ali Guvemli. They are said to have downloaded catering, retail and supplier contact data, as well as details of prices and sales. It is understood that Guvemli left Hyperama to join Bestway, while Poulis is alleged to have had contact
with Bestway’s branch in Cardiff. A further legal stage, described as a ‘cost-andcase management conference’, was held at the Royal Courts of Justice in London on 2 December. Another
session is due to take place in the new year. Hyperama, with turnover of around £140 million, has C&Cs in Nottingham, West Bromwich, Peterborough and Derby. a Hyperama (0115) 985 1300
Henderson’s in-house kitchen
[ INDUSTRY NEWS ]
Norman Lynas The death has been announced of Norman Lynas, owner and chairman of Lynas Foodservice, of Coleraine, Northern Ireland. He was 77. Two years ago he received an OBE for services to the business community and young people. Founded by Norman’s father Bobby in 1945, Lynas Foodservice – a member of Caterforce – has an annual turnover of around £131 million. It operates from sites in Ballymena, Bangor, Belfast, Coleraine, Derry and Newry. It also has eight retail stores trading under the Lynas Food Outlet name as well as a butchery. In 2017 it opened a hub in Bellshill, near Glasgow, followed a year later by one in Lusk, near Dublin. a Lynas Foodservice (028) 7035 0600
SPAR Northern Ireland wholesaler Henderson Wholesale has spent £500,000 purchasing kitchen facilities and creating 14 jobs, including an in-house head chef, Carl Johannesson. He heads a team which has developed a new range that ‘completely redefines the current retail offering of home-made meals’. Under the new own brand, ‘The Chef’, the 35 main and side dishes use ingredients from local suppliers. Henderson’s fresh foods director Neal Kelly said:
“This range is pushing new boundaries for us, producing chef-standard meals using
top quality ingredients.” Wholesale 0289034 2733
Brakes has introduced a bespoke thickener for hot and cold foods – largely designed for use in the healthcare sector. The modified maize starch product, claimed to disperse quickly and evenly, comes in a 360g tub. a Brakes (0345) 606 9090
KD Wholesale Cash & Carry, of Watford, Herts, has joined Unitas Wholesale. The company’s range includes health & beauty, household goods, stationery, arts & crafts, toys and DIY. The business, under MD
Sinit Shah, was formed in 2017 and has a staff of 15. It operates from a 25,000 sq ft building, acting as both a C&C and delivered depot. Unitas Wholesale MD Darren Goldney commented: “We are the champions of
independents. We look forward to supporting the KD team to achieve their ambitious plans for the future.” In other news, the fifth winner of Unitas Wholesale’s Big Night In Champion Brands event was Khalid
Iqbal, of Coatbridge, Lanarkshire, a customer of United Wholesale Scotland. His prize was a Samsung smart TV. a KD Wholesale Cash & Carry (01923) 448631 a Unitas Wholesale (01302) 249909.
Carl Johannesson (centre) with fresh food director Neal Kelly (left) and Henderson Group chairman John Agnew.
Non-food specialist joins Unitas
[ INDUSTRY NEWS ] Musgrave top change
Noel Keeley, currently managing director of Musgrave Wholesale Partners, has been appointed chief executive officer designate of Musgrave Group. In the new year he will replace Chris Martin, who has occupied the post for 15 years and who has just been named as a non-executive director of the Wilko retail store chain. who joined Keeley, Musgrave in 2005, has been in charge of the part of the Irish concern’s business that includes the MarketPlace cash & carry chain (three branches in the north of Ireland and seven in the south). He has also led the growth of SuperValu and Centra in Northern Ireland. At the time of going to press, Musgrave had still to name Keeley’s successor at MarketPlace. a Musgrave Group (00353) 4522100
New JJ role JJ Food Service has named Elit Rowland as head of communications – a role that will involve her working alongside group general manager Terry Larkin to increase brand awareness with customers, suppliers and staff. Ex-trade press editor Rowland previously handled JJ’s press relations on a consultancy basis. Over the past two years, the company has appointed a new chief sales officer, head of operations, chief technology officer and chief products officer. a JJ Food Service (01992) 701701 08
In front at the racetrack At Tyneside Foodservice’s annual trade show, which was held at Newcastle Racecourse, the focus was on ‘the sustainable future’. Around 180 caterers, chefs and other food professionals attended the event, the third run by the Fairway Foodservice member. Also present was group marketing & events manager Richard Ellison. Tyneside’s sales director
Peter Henderson said: “Quite a bit of the discussion on the day surrounded the sustainability of products, including plastics.
“A lot of manufacturers are pushing vegan options, and it’s still progressing.” The wholesaler, which was founded in 1979, supplies more than 3,500 products covering the chilled, frozen and ambient food segments, as well as non-food. It has in excess of 900 customers across the northeast. a Tyneside Foodservice 0191-414 6000
Hunt’s Foodservice, of Sherborne, Dorset, has opened a food store for the public, which it claims may also appeal to the trade. Open seven days a week, it stocks ‘a unique range of products, including restaurant-quality wholesale ingredients, as well as everyday groceries and fresh meat’. It also has a ‘refill station’ where customers can top up with items like rice, pasta and milk. Richard Hunt, MD of the company, which has been serving the catering trade in the south-west for over 80 years, said: “This is an extremely significant moment
in our history. We’ve made great strides as a business in recent years and this move reflects that continued growth. “We want to offer consumers quality produce at wholesale prices.”
This is not the first time that Hunt’s, a member of the Caterforce group, has had a retail shop. It originally had one in Sherborne in the ‘30s. a Hunt’s Foodservice (01935) 810210
Country Range Group has launched a vegan sausage roll and a vegan pasty. Both come in frozen form. The sausage roll, made with soya protein and wrapped in a puff pastry roll, is packed in cases of 66 x 132g. The vegan pasty is made
with potato, swede, onion and meat-free mince in gravy and comes in a 24 x 286g pack. The new products are available through the group’s 13 wholesalers. CRG brand manager Vasita Jantabutara said: ”Veganism has been a key
trend across all sectors of the food industry for the past few years. Campaigns like Veganuary will only help increase the number of those opting for a plant-based diet in the future. It’s vital we’re a step ahead of all the trends.” a Country Range Group (0845) 209 3777
Wholesaler opens retail shop
Two newcomers for vegans
AW buys 17 more stores SPAR south-west wholesaler Appleby Westward has increased the number of its company-owned stores by acquiring Denovo Retail for an undisclosed sum. The Southampton-based retail company’s 15 c-stores and two forecourt shops bring Appleby Westward’s portfolio to 88, with two more due to be added by the middle of next year. Appleby Westward chairman Mike Boardman said: “This acquisition strengthens both our wholesale and retail businesses quickly with over £20 million additional annual retail turnover and nearly £4 million Texaco branded fuel. “It is very good news all
Mike Boardman: ‘Over £20 million additional annual retail turnover.’
round for our supply base and retailers.” As part of the deal, Denovo Retail directors Tony Start and Steve Wilkinson will join Appleby Westward as directors and shareholders of a new business,
Wessex Retail, aimed at increasing acquisitions throughout the south-west. Despite the companyowned growth, Boardman said: “Partnering independent retailers remains the most important element of our business and we will continue to invest in this area, aiming to build our customer numbers in the year ahead. “We also have strong investment plans for our own retail estate.” Appleby Westward delivers to around 200 outlets and has a total annual turnover of about £145 million. a Appleby Westward (01752) 854000
SWA demands DRS board place Colin Smith (pictured), chief executive of the Scottish Wholesale Association, has made a strenuous representation on behalf of the organisation that it should be given a place on the Deposit & Return Scheme administrator board. In a statement to the Scottish government’s environment, climate change & land reform committee, he said that membership of the scheme administrator currently includes only retailers, manufacturers and producers. He views this as unacceptable given the ‘huge role’ the wholesale channel will play in the new scheme. “In our view board membership should reflect the parts of the supply chain that are obligated under the DRS.
“Wholesalers are critical to the implementation and success of DRS in Scotland, and that vital role should be reflected with a position on the administrator board for the SWA as the lead body for Scotland’s wholesaling industry.” Smith also highlighted the fact that the SWA is the only ‘pivotal part’ of the supply chain that is not compensated in any way under the current DRS proposals, either through a handling fee or a member of the administrators. He added: “As the wheels of Scotland’s food and drink industry, the wholesale channel will deliver DRS-obligated products to Scotland’s 4,972 independent retailers and 39,000 restaurants, pubs & clubs, and can therefore play
a hugely important role in helping to identify fraud.” The SWA is also calling for the addition of a dispute resolution mechanism within the DRS proposals, plus a formal means of ensuring that the voices of those in the supply chain sitting outside the scheme administrator are heard and taken into consideration. Smith concluded: “For the new DRS to work optimally in Scotland it must be as inclusive as possible and must take into account the interests and views of all those in the wider supply chain who will be affected by the scheme. “Wholesalers in particular will be fundamental to the success of the scheme and this role should be recognised with formal SWA membership of the administrator.” a Scottish Wholesale Association 0131-556 8753
[ INDUSTRY NEWS ]
Joint MDs Debbie Harrison and Mark Lythe.
Turnover up by 12% Sheffield-based wholesaler Pricecheck boosted turnover by 12% to £81.6 million in the year to April. And, since then, the company has posted a further six months’ figures showing sales of £48 million, with October alone achieving a record monthly income of £11 million. The consumer goods specialist, whose range covers health & beauty, household goods, toiletries and food and drink, has expanded its premises, increased its product range, improved its technology and doubled its workforce over the past three years. Exports, to 82 countries, account for almost 50% of turnover. New territories include Austria, Curacao and Cameroon. Joint managing director (operations & finance) Mark Lythe said: We are firmly on track to reach our £200 million target by 2015.” Joint MD (trading) Debbie Harrison added: “Having recently launched in the vaping market, we are looking forward to continuing growing the account.” a Pricecheck (0114) 244 0887
[ INDUSTRY NEWS ]
Top for value Go Local, serviced by Parfetts, has emerged as top for value in a study of 10 of the leading symbol chains. In a questionnaire prepared by researcher HIM, 1,200 retailers were asked to benchmark the groups in several categories, including price, service and technology.
Some 95% of those questioned said Go Local was competitive and 75% would recommend the chain to non-member retailers. Parfetts’ retail director Guy Swindell said: “It is heartening to see the hard work of everyone here recognised by retailers with an overwhelmingly positive response.” The company supports over 500 Go Local symbol stores and 3,500 in its retail club. a Parfetts 0161-429 0429
Brakes’ parent company Sysco Corporation, of Houston, Texas, has bought Armstrong Produce & Kula Produce, which are sister companies. Based in Hawaii, the acquired concerns, founded in 1979, have an annual turnover of around $155 million. They will operate as part of FreshPoint, Sysco’s speciality produce business. a Brakes (0345) 606 9090 10
Alpine takeover by Kitwave Kitwave Wholesale Group has acquired foodservice operator Alpine Fine Foods, which covers Humberside and Yorkshire. The purchase comes shortly after the expanding company bought Central Supplies, of Halesowen, West Midlands, with a turnover of £50 million. The takeover also comes in the wake of improved trading results for Kitwave, which in the year to April increased earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization by £1.2 mil lion to £14.6 million and turnover by more than £25 million to £367 million. Kitwave chief financial officer David Brind (right) said that during the year 98% of all customer orders were delivered as requested. “We continue to deliver growth in revenue, margin and profitability while ensuring
strong cash flow is maintained. We expect this trend to continue in the foreseeable future.” Alpine Fine Foods, which is based in Hull and has sales of around £13 million, delivers ambient, frozen, chilled and fresh products, including meat, fruit and vegetables. The purchase, for an undisclosed sum, is Kitwave’s second foodservice acquisition, following that of York-based Miller Food Service. Ben Maxted, Kitwave’s head of frozen & chilled operations, has joined the Alpine Fine Foods board alongside Gareth Wilson, Miller Food Service managing director.
Wilson said: “Alpine, having operated in the foodservice sector for 17 years, is a business very similar to our own, built on a reputation of fantastic customer service, resulting from its loyal and hardworking employees.” Phil Davis, Alpine MD, commented: “The acquisition has come at an exciting time for us after an already successful year. This is a positive move towards growing the business further.” Kitwave, founded by CEO Paul Young in 1988, started as a regional confectionery business and developed to being a diversified, national wholesaler through a number of acquisitions since 2011. It employs nearly 1,000 people across the UK. a Kitwave Wholesale Group 0191-259 2277
Bestway’s £100,000 donation
Bestway Wholesale recently presented a cheque for £100,000 to Save the Children. The money was raised as a result of the company’s annual Ascot charity race day, held in the summer and attended by more than 800 people. Chief executive of Bestway Group Lord Zameer Choudrey said: “We are delighted to support the work of Save the Children for the second time. It’s made even more special by the fact that it is the charity’s 100th anniversary.”
Lord Zameer Choudrey (second on right), chief executive of Bestway Group, and Dawood Pervez (left), MD of Bestway Wholesale, with representatives of Save the Children.
More than 20 charities have benefited from Bestway’s fundraising efforts at its Ascot race day since
the event was launched in 1994. a Bestway Wholesale 0208453 1234
[ FWD GOLD MEDAL AWARDS ]
Coral Rose appointed chairman of FWD as it recognises top players
Incoming FWD chairman Coral Rose
he FWD Gold Medals 2019 were revealed last month at Old Billingsgate, London. At the same time, it was announced that Coral Rose, managing director of Country Range, will become chairman of the Federation at the beginning of 2020. Rose will succeed Bidfood chief
executive Andrew Selley who spent three years in the role of chairman. Rose has been a member of the FWD Council since 2014, and has co-chaired its foodservice group. She has presented at FWD conferences and supplier briefings, sharing her passion for encouraging and enabling talented people from all backgrounds to build a career in the wholesale sector. As the new FWD chairman, she will guide the Federation’s agenda under its three strategic pillars of Representing Wholesale, Promoting Wholesale and Bringing Wholesale Together. Commenting on her appointment, she said: “The FWD is a unique forum for competitors to come together and demonstrate the strength of this channel and the opportunity it offers, both for brands and for individuals who choose to dedicate themselves to it. I’m looking forward to being a part of enhancing and developing the service it provides for the wholesale channel.”
Meanwhile, at the FWD Gold Medals ceremony, which was attended by around 700 people, Bidfood and Bestway were the top performing wholesalers, taking three awards each, while Coca-Cola was victorious in three CCM of the supplier categories.
Andy Cresswell (right), chief retail officer of Bestway, is given the award for Wholesale Service to Retailers.
FWD Gold Medal Awards 2019 Roll of Honour Depot Manager Atif Raza, Bestway Wholesale, Leeds Wholesale Service to Retailers Bestway Wholesale Wholesale Service to Caterers Bidfood Depot Star Richard Stimpson, Creed Foodservice Telesales Star Lynda Hayes, Bidfood Star Driver James Vincent, Bidfood Digital Innovation JJ Food Service Customer Business Development Martyn Parkinson, Booker Best Use of Data and Insight JW Filshill Smaller Wholesaler Mevalco Young Wholesaler Salih Sheikh, Bestway Wholesale Green Wholesaler Booker
Retail Brand Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola European Partners Licensed Brand Peroni, Asahi UK Foodservice Brand Walkers, PepsiCo UK Best Use of Data and Insight Coca-Cola European Partners Service Level Supplier Silver Spoon Company Best New Product (Retail) Coke Energy, Coca-Cola European Partners Best New Product (Foodservice) Robinsons, Britvic Soft Drinks Process Innovation Britvic Soft Drinks Digital Innovation Unilever Food Solutions Young Supplier Tom Jackson, Carlsberg UK Green Supplier KP Snacks
Bidfood chief operating officer Norman Wemyss (centre) receives the award for Wholesale Service to Caterers.
David Menendez (centre), CEO of Mevalco, is presented with the award for Smaller Wholesaler.
[ SPOTLIGHT ] Chris Gallacher, managing director, United Wholesale Scotland full sort of person – when times are tough as a leader, you must remain positive. What has been your biggest challenge and how did you overcome it? I’ve been very lucky in health, family and work, and these are the only important things in my life. There is nothing that stands out as a big challenge, although United’s new Warehouse of the Future came close! (Cash & Carry Management: November 2019). However, we overcame the obstacles because the team was fantastic.
‘I’m a glass-half-full sort of person’ What have been your biggest achievements in work and outside work? Becoming managing director of this great business, United Wholesale Scotland. Outside of work, my biggest achievement has to be project managing the build of my new house from scratch, although my wife Joy has to take some of the credit.
become competitive, and I think that’s what helped me in business – I never liked being down the table when it came to KPIs, either in sales or costs.
Who has been the biggest inspiration to you? My mum bringing up six kids on her own in difficult times gave me the strength to succeed in life. She also taught me that no matter what life flings at you, if you remain positive and work hard you will succeed in and outside of business.
What are your interests outside work and how do you maintain a work-life balance? I’ve got to say that, in wholesale and retail, the five-day working week doesn’t exist, and I’m sure Joy will agree that I don’t have a good work-life balance at the moment. However any spare time I do have I spend with my family. My children Lucy and Zach (pictured with Gallacher and his wife) are growing up so fast, so my work-life balance is on the list of things I need to change.
What were your ambitions when you were growing up? Like most young boys I wanted to be a professional footballer, but the closest I came was being on the bench for Queen of the South at a reserve match…and I didn’t get on! So I knew from that point it wasn’t going to happen. Football did encourage me to
How would you describe your personality and what approach do you take in business (and in life)? I would say that my personality doesn’t change too much, whether at work or home. I’m sure my colleagues and family would say I’m patient, kind, considerate, sympathetic, and hard but fair. I’m also persistent. I’m always a glass-half-
What is your favourite book, film and song/piece of music? My favourite book is Leading by Alex Ferguson. I took a lot from this book and it helped me get into the minds of my colleagues. I have many favourite films but the one that stands out is Shawshank Redemption. Regarding music, Joy got me into Lewis Capaldi. We saw him at trnsmt (a music festival in Glasgow). He is great live! He’s Scottish and says it as it is. If you won a holiday, where would you go and who would you take with you? Barbados. I would, of course, take my family, but if they couldn’t go I would CCM take Michael McIntyre.
Booker background With 24 years of retail/wholesale experience, Chris Gallacher started on the shopfloor as a trainee at Booker. He subsequently held a variety of management roles, including retail development controller. After nearly 17 years, he left Booker to become operations manager of Scotfresh, an independent retail chain based in Glasgow. Two years later, in 2016, he was appointed managing director. In January 2018, Gallacher joined United Wholesale Scotland as operations director and he was promoted to managing director, his current role, in July this year.
[ TALKING POINT ]
Using data to accelerate growth TWC director Tanya Pepin (below) suggests it is time to recast the model for wholesale data. wholesaler was once heard to say that he would give away his sales data to any supplier who would help him grow his sales. “And why not?” asks Tanya Pepin, director of data insight consultancy TWC. “It is exactly what happens in the multiples, who then have penalties in place to manage non-performance and retrieve lost income in other ways. “This set me thinking about the model as we know it – and by that, I mean how data is used and owned in wholesale. Should we be looking at recasting the model in a way that still works for wholesalers (ie no loss of income), works for suppliers, is more readily affordable, and gives greater transparency across the industry as a whole as well as a measurable return on investment? “The reality is that in the majority of cases, wholesalers do not have the resources of the multiples, and it’s undoubtedly more of a challenge for them to implement and manage penalties in the same way. So there needs to be balance to ensure a win-win outcome. “Right now, the wholesale data model is relatively straightforward. It entails a transactional arrangement between parties – suppliers pay a percentage of turnover for access and receive reports in a canned form (this means predetermined reports scheduled for distribution to specifically defined user groups). This is usually provided to the wholesaler by a third party. “The take-up (and certainly the interrogation and application/usage) of that data, is mixed and in many cases is dismally under-valued and greeted with a degree of inertia. “But, what if the fee to the wholesaler was offset against sales uplift? What if the data piece was ‘carved up’ in a different way so that both suppliers and wholesalers saw a measurable return? And, what if the commercial arrangement between a supplier and wholesaler was pivotal in forcing the best use of data and upsell rather than just a flat fee? Would this be a powerful motivator for change in a digitally active era where adopters will thrive and survive, gaining competitive advantage before it is too late? “One size doesn’t fit all. If you are large wholesaler, it is in your interests to structure your business in a way that you are making upfront investment from your suppliers. In turn, suppliers will naturally want to focus on where they have visibility of their products, and data is integral to providing this. As a supplier you want to know what type of consumer is buying your products – which retailers should be stocking, and, of course, you want to facilitate and enable that process through your wholesale partner/s. “This plays out in different ways: you want your core range to be listed and on shelf with the right retailers. You may want to invest in digital such as paying for banner ads, to increase visibility, exposure and position within sites and
search engines. You may want to pay for promotions that can deliver genuine uplift by the right retailers to the right consumers. You may be keen to trigger distribution drive and stock give-aways (if the right sites can be proven), and then there is a whole piece around vouchers and gap fills and retail club. “All of these tactics can target specific customers with a propensity to purchase. But right now, they sit in different monetary silos across supplier terms arrangements. A supplier will probably pay a fee for each piece but what if the wholesaler had a digital platform that enabled them to consolidate that fee so the upfront investment is lowered – or even negated – but the incremental cost for demonstrable distribution growth and volume uplift is delivered by those other pieces? “It comes back to what we call ‘actionable insight’ that is accountable, and measurable. It means using data in a very straightforward way to potentially accelerate and amplify sales growth. It is rapidly becoming the right way of doing CCM business in a digital age.”
[ IN FOCUS ]
Healthy position for Caterforce as it invests in a sustainable future
aterforce is predicting a combined member turnover of over £600 million by 2021 – a record figure for the foodservice buying and marketing consortium. The announcement was made by interim managing director Gary Mullineux at the organisation’s biennial conference, held last month at Celtic Manor resort in Wales. He told the 300-plus delegates: “As a group it’s been a very successful 12 months and the business is in an extremely healthy position. “Each of our seven members has continued to grow, and as a group we’ve put a lot of time and budget into key areas such as people, technology and locations. Alongside the success of our Chefs’ Selections range and newly launched coffee brand, Roast 440, this will contribute to what we believe will be record turnover by 2021.” The bullish forecast comes on the back of anticipated revenue of £537 million for 2019, a like-for-like increase of 9.1% versus 2017.
Mullineux explained that Caterforce has spent more than £37 million on infrastructure, including buildings, transport and technology, over the past two years, with further investment planned for the coming 12 months.
‘Consumers are far more aware of issues such as sustainability, personal health and wellbeing, and animal welfare, and that’s why we’re committed to change’ Gary Mullineux, interim MD He also used the conference to launch the group’s new corporate social responsibility (CSR) policy and code of conduct for suppliers. The strategy contains aims and objectives for Caterforce and its individual members. For example, Philip Dennis Foodservice has committed
to saving 20 million kilograms of CO2 by using wind turbines, and JB Foodservice is working with the charities FareShare and Social Bite to reduce food waste. Meanwhile, Caterforce has undertaken to stop the use of all black plastics and move to unbleached cardboard by 2022 for its own brand Chefs’ Selections, which now comprises more than 350 products generating an annual turnover in excess of £50 million. The group has also pledged that 100% of its plastic packaging will be reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025. On top of the recycling targets, it will reduce the amount of sugar and calories in its own-brand products by 20% by 2025. Mullineux commented: “It is more important than ever for businesses to embrace corporate social responsibility. Consumers are now far more aware of issues such as sustainability, personal health and wellbeing, and animal welfare, and that’s why as a business we’re CCM committed to change.”
Interim managing director Gary Mullineux highlighted the group’s solid performance and predicted further strong growth.
[ PRODUCTS & PROMOTIONS ]
PRODUCT OF THE MONTH
Nestlé Professional has introduced a plant-based product range, Garden Gourmet, to the out-of-home market. There are five easy and quick to prepare plant-based products: vegan fillet pieces and mince, a vegetarian burger, vegetarian schnitzel and a vegan burger. According to the company, the Garden Gourmet range is created with a significantly smaller environmental footprint than meat-based products. Nestlé Professional has also published a report showing that over half (51%) of diners would like more meatfree options when eating out. Nestlé Professional (0800) 745845
Coca-Cola European Partners has expanded its Espresso Monster range with the launch of a new flavour, Salted Caramel, designed to appeal to coffee drinkers and energy drink lovers alike. Available in a premium ‘touch ink’ black 250ml can, the new variant joins the existing Espresso & Milk and Vanilla Espresso styles. The full range will be available in a £1.99 price-marked pack option to the independent channel from the New Year. The launch of Espresso Salted Caramel Monster is being supported by PoS material and off-fixture displays. CCEP (0808) 1000 000
Herald has expanded its biodegradable range for 2020 as demand continues for a greener, disposable offering across the UK’s food-to-go outlets and high street chains. The company is offering a range of sizes of its double-wall hot paper cups, including 8oz, 12oz and 16oz. It is also expanding its bagasse range to include chip trays, burger boxes, noodle boxes and square, round and rectangle plates, in varying sizes. Herald’s green solutions also include natural birchwood cutlery, stirrers and skewers and a cornstarch cutlery range. Herald (0208) 507 7900
Better believe it!
Star of the menu
Upfield has announced that, after a brief period with a different name, the spread brand I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter! is back. The relaunch includes revamped versions of the classic Original and Light variants, as well as a new addition to the line-up, I Can’t Believe It’s Even Butterier! Gold. Made with buttermilk, the new variant provides the closest comparison to butter in the range and is said to be ideal for home baking. The Original and Light styles are available as 500g £1 PMPs, while Gold has an rsp of £1.30 for a 500g pack. Upfield.com
Bee Green Wraps is highlighting its range as an eco-friendly alternative to clingfilm and plastic zip-lock bags. More than 1.2 billion metres of clingfilm is used by UK households each year. Bee Green Wraps are produced on a smallholding near Sydney from organic Australian beeswax, then imported by boat to keep the carbon footprint to a minimum. The wraps are 100% natural, strong, water resistant and washable. Five sizes are available, with rsps from £4.99 to £10.99. If properly cared for, the wraps should last around a year and then they are compostable. beegreenwraps.co.uk
New York Bakery Co has launched a Star Shaped Bun, suitable for Christmas offerings. Free from artifical colours, it comes in cases of 42. Becky Allan, out-of-home marketing manager at New York Bakery Co, says: “Food has a huge role to play during the Christmas period and operators can really have fun creating the perfect blend of traditional versus exciting.” Over half (58%) of consumers polled agreed that the Star Shaped Bun would be a good Christmas special and a further 63% liked or extremely liked the light texture and taste of the bun. New York Bakery Co (01709) 580840
[ TOBACCO & NGPS UPDATE ]
Keep up with category changes
It is important that wholesalers stay up to date with market trends and legislation, and reflect changing consumer preferences in their range of tobacco and next-generation products. s the price of cigarettes increases, downtrading continues to be a notable trend, benefiting the sub-economy segment. Roll your own (RYO) has also been consistently increasing its share of the overall tobacco category as a result of the growing demand for value-for-money products. Imperial Tobacco recently launched a new Lambert & Butler RYO variant to help retailers take advantage of the rising demand for economy RYO products from trusted cigarette brands. Available in 30g and 50g formats with rsps of £11 and £18.15, the new blend is said to benefit from reduced moisture levels to make it easier to roll. This has proved ‘exceptionally popular’ with consumers during testing, outperforming competitor brands. According to Imperial Tobacco, brand awareness of Lambert & Butler is at 51% (HBT). Brand recognition and quality are of paramount importance for any tobacco product launches to succeed in today’s plain packaging market environment, the company points out. Chris Street, market manager UK at Imperial Tobacco, says: “Demand for value for money is a dominant trend within the tobacco category. As more consumers seek out the lowest out-of-pocket spend, we’re seeing an increasing shift away from factory-made cigarettes to roll your own. “While offering great value for money is crucial, many consumers making the move into RYO are looking for reassurance on quality by buying products from well-known brands they can trust. With its strong tobacco heritage and brand recognition, Lambert & Butler is well placed to respond to this trend with its new RYO variant.” Also new from Imperial Tobacco is a combi pouch for Riverstone, claimed to be the first ever combi pouch to hit the UK market. With an rsp of £11, the Riverstone Combi Pouch includes 30g of easy-to-roll tobacco, 60 papers and 60 filters, and is designed to appeal to new entrants into the fine cut tobacco category and dualists. “Our research shows that the handy box formats currently available on the market tend to compress the tobacco inside, making it difficult to separate and roll,” says Street. “We are addressing this issue head on with the launch of our new combi pouch solution. As the first brand to bring to market such an innovative
packaging solution, we’re confident this latest launch for Riverstone will attract even more interest and sales from adult smokers looking for great quality RYO tobacco at an affordable price.” Imperial Tobacco reports that the economy RYO segment now accounts for 45% of fine cut tobacco sales, compared to 38.3% last year, with further growth expected. Despite being launched just a year ago as a new economy RYO brand, Riverstone has already become one of the fastest growing tobacco brands in the market as it taps into this trend, says the company.
Menthol ban: be prepared The ban on menthol from 20 May 2020 will leave many existing smokers without their product of choice. “While some adult smokers may simply switch to other traditional tobacco alternatives, many menthol consumers may use this as an opportunity to explore new ways to stick with their flavour preference and move into vaping,” points out Duncan Cunningham, UK corporate affairs director at Imperial Tobacco & blu. “The menthol tobacco segment has a sizeable share of the market, and with a third of adult smokers yet to even try vaping and almost 40% dualists still dabbling in tobacco (Action of Smoking and Health Research), wholesalers and retailers can play a crucial role in helping these consumers switch to vaping.” Imperial Brands advises wholesalers to start talking to their customers about the menthol ban now. “Experience tells us that consumer awareness of tobacco legislation tends to be relatively low until it hits the shelves and they can’t buy product they want, so talking to customers ahead of the ban is important,” says Cunningham. “By engaging with customers early, wholesalers can help retailers understand what is coming down the line and offer advice on what alternatives are available.” He adds: “In order to prepare for this potential influx of ex-menthol cigarette smokers, wholesalers should ensure they have a strong range of menthol e-liquid flavours on offer, especially those including nicsalts like myblu Intense that will further help them switch. Regardless of the ban, the top-selling blu e-liquid flavour is menthol, so these variants are already very popular within the vaping category and worth getting right.” For ex-menthol smokers looking to stay in tobacco, Rizla Polar Blast, a roll-yourown filter tip containing a Crushball, allows smokers to ‘click’ to enjoy the taste of mint whenever they roll their own.
WN O SH E TB O N N A S C N T O S EN A M E E R S I L T A R E EG V L D A R O S I F TH
[ TOBACCO & NGPS UPDATE ] Imperial Tobacco regularly supports wholesale customers with tactics tailored to their individual depot needs such as depot days and promotions, but one of its biggest areas of focus is education. “Retailers need knowledgeable advice on what to buy so it’s vital that depot staff understand what products they are selling, but also the end customers who they are selling to. Training is key to success in this regard and by taking the time to educate all staff on the category and different trends, wholesalers can provide an exceptional level of service to customers that will encourage them to return to the depot again and again,” says Duncan Cunningham, UK corporate affairs director at Imperial Tobacco & blu. JTI similarly emphasises the importance of category knowledge and provides JTI Advance training modules on trends, merchandising and products. With 6.5 million kilograms of rolling tobacco sold in the UK each year and with growth of 6.5% year on year (IRI), it is crucial that wholesalers make the most of the profit opportunity RYO brings, says the company. To do so, wholesalers should be knowledgeable about the category. “Maintaining full availability and stocking a wide range of products that cater towards different retailer needs will also ensure repeat custom in your depot,” says a JTI spokesperson. JTI recently ran a promotion on its Holborn Yellow brand, offering 15% profit on return on 30g (rsp £11) and 50g (rsp £18.10) variants.
Vaping There is still plenty of room for growth in vaping as 60% of the UK’s seven million adult smokers want to quit (Office of National Statistics) and they see vaping as the preferred method to begin their journey (Mintel). Over the past year, vape sales in independent retailers rose by 28.8%, beating symbols, which achieved growth of 22.8%. However, sales through independents still lagged behind the multiple channel, which posted 37% growth (IRI). John Patterson, sales director of JUUL Labs UK, comments: “The independent and convenience channels are still underperforming in the vape category. This signposts the huge potential for growth.” Closed pod systems increased their share of the total market from 12.5% to 31.6% over the past year, while liquids – although still in growth – saw their overall share decline from 47.7% to 39.6%. Patterson believes that despite independent and convenience retailers being slower to see the potential of closed pod vaping systems, they are now catching up. “This time last year, closed systems accounted for just over 6% of all vaping sales through independents and convenience stores. Today, that figure is in excess of 28%. 22
Vaping now included in guide The Plan for Profit Licensed & Tobacco Guide recently introduced by Unitas Wholesale includes vaping for the first time. The category is listed as part of the core range guidance. The Plan for Profit advice is compiled using information from Unitas’s supplier partners, industry experts and member wholesalers. An online version of the guide can be accessed at www.planforprofit.co.uk and via the Plan for Profit app, available on Google Play and the App Store.
“Although open systems is still the dominant sector and should be a major part of any vape offer, the gap is narrowing rapidly,” he adds. “One of the main reasons the multiples are pulling ahead is that they embraced closed pod systems earlier; closed systems now outperform open system sales in their stores.” Patterson is convinced that independent and convenience retailers have to focus on closed systems to get their fair share of the vaping category. “Closed pod systems are driving 80% of the total market growth in traditional retail. Although independents and symbols have 28% of this sector, if we include specialist vape and online stores, their combined vape share is in the region of 12%. The opportunity lies in these stores getting the same share of vape as they have in tobacco, which is around 45% (Beige Analytics).” Patterson adds: “Volumes will undoubtedly increase as the market grows, but we have to ensure that we also drive value and margin in the category otherwise the scale of the opportunity will be lost.” The JUUL range includes a starter kit (single device, USB charger and four flavoured JUULpods), single devices and JUULpods refills, which come in a range of flavours and nicotine strengths. The brand is already listed by Filshill, Bestway Wholesale and DeeBee, and the company is in discussion with other wholesalers. Its priority has been the implementation of an age verification process at wholesale so that all depot and delivered customers adhere to its Challenge 25 policy. JUUL Labs will continue its testimonial advertisements in cinemas and its out-of-home poster campaign in the first quarter of 2020. It will also be lowering the price of a single device from £24.99 to £19.99 in the new year to give smokers an additional incentive to switch. Within wholesale, the company has a programme of price and added-value CCM promotions scheduled for 2020.
For further information: Imperial Tobacco (0117) 963 6636 JTI (01932) 372000 JUUL Labs (0808) 164 1301
WN O SH E TB O N N A S C N T O S EN A M E E R S I L T A R E EG V L D A R O S I F TH