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Celebrating 100 years

Steve Pappas on Costco’s plans for significant UK investment Sharing data is the way forward: IGD advocates collaboration Bestway Batleys Foodservice wins £2 million worth of new contracts Small businesses face harsher fines for employment law breaches

• In-store from 1st September to 31st December 2014 • Stock up now, with the no.1 popcorn brand (growing at +22%* YoY) * Source: Nielsen sales value data to 24th May 2014

For more information contact Tangerine Sales on 01253 603613 or visit www.butterkist.co.uk

United Wholesale Scotland chief Asim Sarwar in the Spotlight

The business magazine for cash & carry/delivered wholesalers

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Are these just the tip? Is the incidence of tobacco smuggling increasing? Are HM Revenue & Customs officers becoming more successful at intercepting the fraud? Or has nothing changed? The questions arise because of a spate of HMRC announcements made over the past month involving ‘busts’ in various parts of the country. In Dover, three nationals from the Czech Republic were caught trying to smuggle in 2.26 tonnes of tobacco, evading VAT of more than £367,000, and in Burton-on-Trent, six retail shops were apprehended with over 19,000 illicit cigarettes, 7.6kg of hand-rolling tobacco and 51.75 litres of alcohol, with total duty evasion of nearly £9,000. Meanwhile, in Luton, batches of tobacco, wine and spirits were seized (£22,000 duty and VAT evasion); in Derby, a would-be fraud for cigarettes and tobacco totalled nearly £10,000; three arrests were made in the West Midlands as part of a £1.7m tobacco smuggling ring; and in Essex there was an attempted £2.4m scam. For all we know, these represent just the tip of the iceberg (or should that be cigarette?). It proves that HMRC is doing a valuable job, but what does it say about counterfeit goods entering the supply chain? And what effect has the display ban in supermarkets (and next year in independents), growing demand for e-cigarettes and grotesque pack images had on the purchases of habitual smokers and youngsters coming on the scene?

Following SPAR’s acquisition of an 80% stake in BWG, chairman Leo Crawford will continue to lead the business ... see p.6


Bestway Group launches a monthly ‘tenner’ promotion covering impulse grocery and non-food ... see p.4


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4,560 July 2013–June 2014 Mervyn Gilbert news editor


ISSN 1352-254X

Cash & Carry Management is available on subscription at £52 per year (single copies £5). Overseas subscription: £80.

Cash & Carry Management

• September 2014 • 3

news IN BRIEF Wider JJ view JJ Food Service is aiming to attract business from gastro-pubs, restaurants and hotels, as well as its core clientele in the café, coffee shop, takeaway, educational and local authority sectors. Fresh, local and gluten-free food will be major considerations and the Enfieldbased company will be trebling its field sale force over the next six months.

Bakery guide Bidvest 3663 has created a ‘From the bakery’ guide on its website. It lists almost 400 products (more than 30 of which are new), including ownlabel cherry tomato & oregano focaccia, chocolate twist pastries and wrapped paninis.

‘Great Taste’ SPAR pear cider and mango & passionfruit smoothie now carry the gold and black Great Taste logo. The right to do so is based on an accreditation scheme supported by food critics, chefs, WI members, farmers and food writers.

IT contract Sanderson has won a contract to supply its Swords wholesale IT system to fresh and frozen foods catering wholesaler, 5 Star (Edible) Products, of east London.


Minority stake sold Metro, the German wholesale and retail group that retained a 9% share in Booker when it sold Makro UK two years ago to the UK cash & carry/wholesaler for £140m, has disposed of its minority stake in Changes made at several branches. Booker. At a price of 125p business – said that it would per share, the placing raised ‘continue its strategic partaround £196m for the nership with Booker’. Dusseldorf-based concern. Meanwhile, Booker is proA statement issued on gressing with plans to restyle behalf of Metro – which is its existing C&Cs and those making more space available operating as Makro to comin some of its global C&C bine the best aspects of each operations for delivered

‘Key part of the supply chain’ – MP James Wharton MP described C&C/wholesale as “a key part of the supply chain” when he visited the Batleys depot in Stocktonon-Tees as part of an initiative by the Federation of Wholesale Distributors. The Member for Stockton South met staff and customers at the branch, which supplies around 3,000 retail and foodservice businesses and has a staff of more than 100. General manager Dave Bolam showed the MP around the site, accompanied by FWD chief executive James Bielby. Issues discussed included the illicit trade in alcohol and tobacco, and theft. Bielby explained how his members support independent businesses and provide choice and value to consumers.

• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

of the chains. It is currently changing the look and composition of three Makro outlets in London: Enfield, Charlton and Park Royal (Cash & Carry Management: June). Two unspecified sites are also in the early stages of alteration, while others are in the pipeline. The initial three depots to undergo the changes were in Belfast, Sheffield and Preston. Tel: Booker Group (01933) 371000.

All at a tenner

Wharton: ‘Important that government understands.’

Wharton, whose constituency is home to several cash & carries, including Booker and Makro branches, said: “Wholesale distribution employs hundreds of people in Stockton South. It is important that government understands the specific needs of this segment of the market and I was delighted to get to see first hand the excellent work at Batleys.” Bielby said the MP’s visit was one of several such trips taking place in the months before next May’s General Election. Tel: FWD (01323) 724952.

Bestway Group this month launches a promotion on 14 Best-in own-label products, all priced at £10. The monthly ‘Every Deal a Tenner’ activity will feature a total of 36 SKUs. The selection, covering impulse grocery and nonfood, offers individual profit on return ranging from 33% to 57%. Customers buying all 14 items will make a 40.66% POR. The deals include three cases of ‘Mighty’ kitchen roll, eight cases of cookies and three cases of chopped tomatoes. Nick Brown, category manager for own-label, said: “This promotion offers retailers fantastic margins and the chance to trial some previously unstocked products. Customers can pass on savings and still retain a great margin for themselves.” Tel: Bestway Group 0208453 1234.



Europe leads for Bidvest A sharp increase in trading profit from Bidvest’s global foodservice operations – up by 28% – was headed by a 40.4% leap by the European division, with the UK business making a sizeable contribution, notably from the fresh foods side. Worldwide foodservice sales increased by 23.6% to R102.26bn (£5.77bn). Chief executive of

Johannesburg-based parent company Bidvest Group Brian Joffé (pictured) reported that total foodservice business achieved trading profit of R3.19bn (£180m) compared with R2.49bn (£140m). The European foodservice division contributed sales of R62.19bn (£3.51bn) – up 29.1% – and a trading surplus of R1.31bn (£70m), as opposed to R936.24m (£52.8m). Asia Pacific had sales of R33.46bn (£1.9bn) compared with R28.63bn (£1.6bn), with profit up by 23.8% to R1.5bn (£80m), and the South African company recorded sales ahead by 11.5% to R6.61bn (£370m) and profit 9% higher at R370.99m (£20.9m). All foodservice regions

had delivered “real growth in home currencies”, said Joffé. He added that Bidvest 3663 “performed ahead of expectations”, with strong profits growth, while case volumes for Bidvest Logistics reached record levels. During the year, as reported by Cash & Carry Management, majority stakes were acquired in several businesses, including PCL, a dairy and salad distribution concern in Hatfield, Herts, Italian chilled food distributor Gruppo DAC, and Brazilian food wholesaler Avelino. Outside of the UK, said Joffé, there were signs of recovery across several markets, with strong improvement in the Czech and Polish foodservice operations. Tel: Bidvest 3663 (0370) 3663 000.

Fáilte Produce in £1.2m move All three divisions of Fáilte Holdings are now located in close proximity in Glasgow following a 10-mile move by the group’s fruit & vegetable business, Fáilte Produce. Representing an investment of £1.2m, the fruit & veg supplier has relocated to a 20,000 sq ft site in Glasgow Fruit Market, giving it 5,000 sq ft more space than previously.

The new premises have fully automated handling systems for washing, grading, sorting and packing fresh vegetables and potatoes. The business, with a turnover of around £7m, has also broadened its range of cuts and pack sizes. Sister companies are Fáilte Food Service, with annual sales of £15m and operating from 60,000 sq ft

One of Today’s leading foodservice members.


premises, and Fáilte Wholesale, with turnover approaching £3m at its 8,000 sq ft site. All three, with total staff of 120, have access to a fleet of 60 vehicles. Chief executive officer of the Today’s Group member Jim Cummiskey said: “Increased demand for washed and prepared produce dictates our need for investment in new plant and facilities. With ever more stringent directives being placed on food preparation facilities, we are now at the forefront of Scotland’s prepared fresh produce sector.” Fáilte’s customer base includes sole traders, the hospitality sector, local councils and contract caterers. Tel: Fáilte Holdings 0141559 5749.

Cash & Carry Management

Allergen labelling JJ Food Service has redesigned the labels on its own-brand range to comply with new allergen regulations. Chief product officer Ali Guvemli said: “Caterers will need to make sure they are working with suppliers and wholesalers that are legally compliant. We’ve responded by evaluating all our suppliers to make sure that they are ready for the change. Some of them have been slow to respond, so we’ve stopped working with them altogether.” Just over one-third of the foodservice specialist’s £185m sales come from own-label lines, which now also highlight accreditations like Free Range, GMO-Free and Red Tractor. All JJ customers are being given a leaflet listing the information. The new UK allergen labelling regulations come into force in December. Tel: JJ Food Service (0843) 309 0991.

Select extras Latest to join Today’s Group’s Select own-label range are Rich Roast instant coffee granules 100g (pricemarked at £1.49) and malt vinegar and distilled malt vinegar 568ml (65p). Tel: Today’s Group (0844) 247 0700.

• September 2014 • 5


Hannah heads export drive Four Scottish breweries are lending their support to a craft beer export scheme initiated by Simon Hannah, managing director of Glasgow-based C&C/wholesaler JW Filshill. And more have expressed interest in coming on board. The new JW Filshill International, with Hannah as chief executive, operates as the Craft Beer Clan of Scotland and is initially targeting the Asian market. The four breweries that have helped launch the initiative are: William Bros Brewing, of Alloa, Eden Brewery, of St Andrews, Perth-based Inveralmond Brewery and the Deeside Brewery, Banchory. Successful trade missions have already been conducted in Asia, and trade events have been attended in Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei and Seoul, as a result of which initial shipments are going to Korea and Taiwan.

Simon Hannah is behind new craft beer initiative.

The Craft Beer Clan of Scotland is also calling on the expertise of Asia Pacific consultant David Moore and beer industry veteran Chris Miller, former chief executive of Harviestown Brewery. Japan is one of the Asian target markets, while outside of that continent the team are eyeing North America, Canada, Scandinavia, Italy and Australia. Tel: JW Filshill 0141-883 7071. Despite continued investment in technology, increased productivity and improved operating cost

efficiency, Filshill saw turnover slip by 4.2% to £158m in the year to 3 January. Gross profit was static at £10.2m but the pre-tax surplus was up from £272,000 to £800,000. Operating costs were reduced by £400,000. The C&C/wholesaler and owner of the KeyStore brand improved its website and EPoS systems and made other digital innovations for the benefit of 157 symbol retailers in Scotland and six in the north of England. The company also has 1,400 independent C&C and delivered customers.

New own-label fruit & veg Bestway Group has launched a new own-label fruit and vegetable range. Category controller for fresh and chilled Steve Carter (pictured) said: “At the moment there is a chasm of opportunity in chilled and fresh for convenience retailers. “At one end of the spectrum we have the multiples offering aisles of loose and packaged produce and at the other we have traditional greengrocers and ethnic specialists. “Consumers would like to


buy fresh locally rather than make additional, unnecessary trips to these types of stores. Local stores do other areas of chilled and fresh well, so there is no reason why they cannot provide a strong core fruit and veg offering.” The Best-in selection, all price-marked, includes 20 fruit and vegetable items, with labels displaying the country of origin and best before dates. There is a minimum 30% profit on return on each SKU.

• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

The range comprises: bananas three pack, 79p; honeydew melon, £1.39; grapes mixed, 500g, £1.59; grapes green, 170g, £1; easy peelers, 600g, £1.25; large oranges, four, £1.75; Golden Delicious apples, four, £1.19; Gala apples, four, £1.19; lemons, three, £1; limes, three, £1; tomatoes, six, 99p; cherry tomatoes, 250g, 89p; vine tomatoes, 500g, £1.49; cucumber, 59p; iceberg lettuce, 79p; salad potatoes, 500g, £1; onions, three, £1; white potatoes, 2kg, £1; carrots, 500g, 79p; and mixed peppers, three, £1.19. Tel: Bestway Group 0208453 1234.

Major share in BWG Investment in BWG’s SPAR wholesale and retail business in Ireland, as well as the company’s Appleby Westward wholesale subsidiary in Saltash, Cornwall, will be made over the next five years. The pledge to commit around 100m euros to these operations was made by the directors of SPAR Group in South Africa, which has paid 55m euros for an 80% stake in the Dublin-based group. BWG delivers to about 1,100 symbol stores and has annual sales of 1.2bn euros. Established for 50 years, it claims a 35% share of the Irish convenience store market. BWG chairman Leo Crawford, who is chairman of SPAR International, will, together with his management team, continue to lead the Irish business. SPAR South Africa has annual sales of 3.5bn euros. BWG, originally part of the Brooks Watson Group, was acquired by Irish Distillers in the late 1980s. Until 2002, it was owned by Groupe Pernod Ricard, when it was purchased in a Crawford-led management buyout supported by venture capitalist Electra Partners. Eight years ago, it was bought by Triode Investments, a company controlled by Crawford and two partners. Tel: BWG Group (003531) 409 0300.

Money for expansion.




Refurb brings results The recently refurbished 40,000 sq ft Parfetts cash & carry at Anfield, Liverpool, is achieving sales 10% higher than previously. As reported (Cash & Carry Management: June), this branch and the other Merseyside one – the 105,000 sq ft C&C at Aintree – are the first in the sixstrong chain to be refurbished and include other refinements. Now those at Somercotes (117,000 sq ft), Sheffield (75,000 sq ft), Stockport (200,000 sq ft) and Halifax (50,000 sq ft) are receiving similar treatment. Improvements include branded tower ends, vinyl and back-lit drop

banners, vinyl backboards and video screen walls. The Landmark Wholesale member generates more than 7,000 customer visits a week to its six branches, resulting in annual sales of over £300m. Commenting on the corporate programme, Parfetts trading director Greg Suszczenia said that while the project began with just depot branding partnerships, “the wider refurbishment success at Aintree has made us reassess the whole group as it fits perfectly with our strategy for the branches

to be seen as more than cash & carries – retail hubs with a far greater range of services for the independent retailer”. A major aspect of the business is the Go Local, Go Local Extra and Go Local Plus retail initiatives, currently attracting more than 1,000 members. Parfetts is also committed to expanding its catering business this year and its click & collect operation. Tel: Parfetts Cash & Carry 0161-429 0429.

The company’s two Merseyside cash & carries are at Aintree (above) and Anfield.

More for ‘rookie’ Business valued at £2m was secured last month by the fledgling Bestway Batleys Foodservice. Nottingham NHS entrusted BBF to supply eight of its sites with drinks, snacks and confectionery, while Burton NHS appointed the company to supply a range including confectionery, ambient catering and chilled foods to a large hospital with twiceweekly deliveries. For Rotherham Council, the wholesaler is delivering ambient catering, soft drinks, snacks and confectionery to 12 sites. BBF senior contracts manager Steve Irons said: “Although we have immense buying power and an excellent logistical framework, we are still relatively new in the sector. These accounts were previously serviced by some of the biggest names in foodservice.” Tel: Bestway Batleys Foodservice (01738) 646666.

Tools to become more profitable Retail director of Today’s Group John Kinney (pictured) is delighted with the amount of interest shown in the group’s ‘Plan for Profit’ digital guide to core ranging. Since its launch last year, there have been more than 21,000 visitors to the site, with 30% accessing the tool via a mobile phone or tablet. Over 14,000 retailers have used the website to download information, with planograms alone receiving more than 10,000 hits. Other popular features include a PoS printer, a findyour-local-depot page, core


ranging advice, a profit-onreturn calculator and new product launches. Some 20% of retailers have accessed the site using their mobile phone, while 10% visited it via a tablet. The site averages 200 hits a month more than a year ago. Kinney said: “Businesses are increasingly seeing digital as an opportunity to drive growth; independent retailers are no exception. “We are giving retailers the tools they need to grow in a way that’s profitable and easy, whether it’s via a desktop computer, tablet or

• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

60,000 booklets produced annually. Tel: Today’s Group (0844) 877 1432.

P&G change

mobile phone.” The ‘Plan for Profit’ guide is also available as a printed booklet. This year, for the first time, the tobacco section was incorporated into the main book. There are

John Drake, who has been with Procter & Gamble for more than 10 years, has replaced Nick Beresford as head of UK emerging channels (covering wholesale, convenience, discounting and pharmacy). Beresford has moved to a new global role at the Geneva office. Tel: P&G UK (01932) 896000.




Indoor navigation system set to personalise shopping trips Bidvest 3663 nets major account Bidvest 3663 has secured a £1.4 million contract with Plymouth City Council to supply a wide range of food and catering products over the next four years. The UK foodservice provider has been supplying the city council with ambient, frozen and nonfood disposables since 2010 but under the new agreement, 71 of the council’s school will now receive dairy and bakery products and support in creating nutritionallybalanced menus. Paul Brown, business development controller for the education sector at Bidvest 3663, said: “Schools will be facing tough challenges over the next six months with the introduction of the Food Information Regulations and School Food Plan, and we see it as our responsibility to help them with these changes, making the transition as easy as possible.” To correspond with the upcoming regulations, Bidvest 3663 has redesigned its own-brand packaging to display detailed ingredient information and has released an ‘EU Food Information Regulations’ guide to help educate caterers about all 14 major allergens. Tel: Bidvest 3663 (0370) 3663 000.


Bestway Group has partnered with RNF Digital Innovation to help develop an indoor navigation service using smartphones, tablets and i-beacon technology. The £702,000 project, which will be launched into Bestway’s UK depots over the next 18 months, will enable shoppers to use a location-sensitive app which combines their preferences and previous shopping behaviour with information about the store they are visiting. According to Rob Mannion, managing

director at RNF Digital Innovation, Bestway customers will then be able to work out their quickest and most economical route instore, while also taking advantage of product updates and offers. Jamil Mohammed, group e-commerce manager at Bestway Group, said: “This project represents a fantastic opportunity to take our customer experience to a new level of interaction. “By embracing ibeacon technology throughout our network of UK stores and

depots, we will be able to offer our customers a unique retail experience.” RNF Digital Innovation has secured a £500,000 grant from the Technology Strategy Board, the UK’s innovation agency, to implement the sat-nav shopping experience. A further £202,000 investment will come from RNF Digital Innovation and its collaborative project partners – the Bestway Group, Aston University and the University of Lincoln – who will both provide technical and research support. Tel: Bestway Group 0208453 1234.

Mars recalls contaminated drinks Mars Chocolate Drinks has been forced to recall thousands of bottles of milk drinks after ‘elevated levels’ of a food poisoning bug were detected. The recall, which applies to batches carrying a bestbefore date between 19 December 2014 and 11 April 2015, includes a range of milk drink sports-cap and 750ml fridge-pack bottles manufactured by Milchwerke Mittelelbe GMBH. A Mars spokesperson said: “We are recalling all of the products listed as a precaution as they could pose a possible health risk due to the potential presence of a type of the bacteria known as Bacillus.” Parfetts Cash & Carry is one of a number of wholesalers affected by the recall and soft drinks/confectionery trading manager, Bill Taylor, admits that the situation has

• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

cost “time and money” to contact retailers and withdraw the promotions. He commented: “We had just gone to print so it cost us a lot of money to pull the products from our Retail Club and national promotions as quickly as possible.

“It has been handled very well and professionally by Mars but it created a lot of upheaval at the time for Parfetts and our customers.” Tel: Mars Drinks (01256) 471500. Tel: Parfetts Cash & Carry 0161-429 0429.

PRODUCT RECALL NOTICE Sports-cap bottles: Mars Milk (350, 376ml) Starburst Strawberry Drink (350ml) Bounty Drink (350ml) Snickers Shake (350, 376ml) Skittles Wildberry Drink (376ml) Galaxy Smooth Milk (350, 376ml) Milky Way Milk (350ml) Mars Caramel Milk (350ml) Skittles Fruits Drink (350, 376ml)

• • • • • • • • •

Fridge-pack bottles: Mars Milk (750ml) Galaxy Smooth Milk (750ml) Skittles Fruits Drink (750ml)

• • •



Indian and Oriental

Symbols and independents are more in favour.

Fickle shoppers Shoppers are using, on average, four types of grocery shop each month – including symbols and unaffiliated independents – according to the IGD’s Shopper Vista research. And more are visiting two or more outlets on the same trip. The data shows that 47% use several styles of grocery store on the same trip – up from 42% last year. The IGD said that 55% of shoppers use coupons when food and grocery shopping

Monthly wine deal Bidvest 3663 has launched a ‘wine of the month’ promotion in conjunction with its specialist drinks division, ViVAS. Two wines are being featured in each deal, offering the purchaser up to 60% gross profit. The first promotion includes El Muro Blanco and El Muro Tinto from Spain, followed in October by US varieties Furious Boar Chardonnay and Zinfandel Rosé. Established in 2008, ViVAS is a joint venture with Bibendum. Tel: Bidvest 3663 (0370) 3663 000.

and 44% shop at a specific time to take advantage of the ‘reduced to clear’ section. IGD chief executive Joanne Denney-Finch said the most popular shopping combination is supermarkets, convenience stores and food and high street discounters. She added: “There are more grocery choices available, whether additional convenience and discount stores, or extra online shopping options.” Tel: IGD (01923) 857141.

SPAR introduced its new Indian and Oriental food range last month at a curry night for 200 troops at RAF Brize Norton at Carterton, Oxon. The 17-strong own-brand selection, which the symbol group is projecting to be worth £3.4m, consists of ready meals, accompaniments and stir fry dishes. It features six totally new lines: Chicken Jalfrezi with Rice, 450g; Lamb Rogan Josh with Rice, 450g; Thai Green Chicken Curry with Rice, 450g; Chicken in Blackbean with Rice, 450g; Sweet Chilli Stir Fry Sauce, 180g; and Chinese Stir Fry Sauce, 180g. The range, which appears in stores this month, is being advertised on television from from 13-26 October as part of SPAR’s national media campaign. During this period, the

new ethnic ready meals will be on promotion at two for £4, while four Onion Bhajis and four Vegetable Spring Rolls will be on offer for £1. As one of four ‘transformational strategies’ within the group’s Growing Together plan, major investment is being made in ownlabel, said SPAR UK brand director Susan Darbyshire. “We are committed to creating a fantastic, profitable own-brand range for retailers that is relevant to customer needs locally and offers excellent quality and prices,” she told Cash & Carry Management. The launch at Brize Norton was relevant to SPAR’s customer base. Three years ago, it expanded its contract with ISS Facility Services to supply a further 17 stores at 14 RAF sites across the UK. Tel: SPAR UK 020-8426 3700.

New ethnic range from Brakes Celebrity chef Cyrus Todiwala put on a show at the new Brakes Food Market in Croydon – and then did some shopping there. Todiwala, who owns and runs one of the top Indian restaurants in central London, Café Spice Namasté, showed off his skills as part of a World Food Festival marking the launch of the wholesaler’s Indian, Asian and Caribbean range. He was also there to support Mum’s The Chef, a local social enterprise which tackles long-term unemployment among ethnic women. Also attending the event were former England cricketer Mark Butcher and a troupe of Bollywood dancers.


Brakes’ head chef Neil Smith (left) with chef Cyrus Todiwala and former cricketer Mark Butcher.

Visitors enjoyed free food and drink, face painting and henna tattoos, as well as other cooking demonstrations, including one from Brakes’ head chef Neil Smith. The Food Market is stocked, designed and staffed with caterers in mind. It carries more than 4,000 product lines. The ethnic range alone features over 300 lines for

Indian and Asian restaurants including a selection of Halal meat and specialist foods like Chana Dal. Store operations director Martin Sandler said: “It was a really good day and we are pleased with how everything went and how our new range was received.” Tel: Brakes Group (01233) 206000.

Cash & Carry Management

• September 2014 • 11

news extra

Costco unveils Hayes depot and promises further investment The former Western International Market site in Hayes welcomed 2,500 visitors, as warehouse manager Darren Wishart officially opened Costco Wholesale’s 26th depot in the UK last month. Businesses often live and die by the analogy that appearances are everything. Fortunately for Costco Wholesale, its new Hayes depot seemed to make an instant impression on visitors during its official unveiling last month, as one by one, jaws dropped and a collective intake of breath was drawn. On entering the store, visitors were immediately confronted with an endless display of shelves packed to the rafters with almost every product imaginable, while a series of staff members ushered visitors in the direction of cakes and savoury products that would have made Mary Berry envious. But while many simply followed the crowd, a smattering of technophiles remained glued to the screen of a 90-inch television, while a select group of Grand Designs enthusiasts simply marvelled at the architecture of the warehouse spanning 140,000 sq ft. Indeed, the sheer breadth and location of Costco’s 26th UK depot offers a resounding statement of intent for the USbased warehouse club chain, which has made an estimated £430 million net investment in the UK market to date. Steve Pappas, managing director of Costco Wholesale, told Cash & Carry Management exclusively: “The new warehouse follows our current building prototype and is very similar in terms of construction and layout to the buildings we opened in Southampton and Farnborough last year. “One interior change is the addition of a second large freezer unit. This is in line with what we do in North America and Australia and enables us to extend our range and stockholding capacity in the fast growing frozen food category.” Since opening its first warehouse in West London, Costco’s new member sign-ups have “exceeded all expectations”, reports Pappas, with thousands of members visiting the depot in the first week, despite heavy road traffic and parking challenges.


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

Did you know? The UK is currently Costco’s largest market outside of North America and contributes about 2.5% of total company turnover. Pictured here is Hayes warehouse manager Darren Wishart opening the new branch.

To build on Costco’s £41 million outlay on the new West London-based depot, plans are already in place to open new sites in Sunbury and Wembley during the second half of 2015, as well as a distribution centre in Crick, Northamptonshire. Pappas commented: “With four new warehouses added in the last 21 months and two more planned to open before the end of 2015, we’ve simply outgrown the existing facility. “The distribution centre also supports order fulfillment for our growing online business and our new warehouse in Seville, Spain. “Crick is the ideal site due to its location and proximity to the M1 and it’s close enough to our current Lutterworth facility to allow all of our existing employees to remain in their jobs with little or no inconvenience. The new facility is expandable and should support our growth well into the future.” Earlier this summer, Costco also diversified into the UK fuel market and officially opened its first petrol forecourt in Liverpool. But while Pappas says that Costco will “continue to grow the business at a responsible and sustainable rate”, he remains reluctant to commit to an expansion plan without trialling the service first. “Costco is a major player in the fuel business in North America and we think this is a business where we can provide our members with meaningful savings and added convenience,” he said. “We will be testing the concept in Liverpool and if it works well, we will extend petrol stations to additional locations where space and planning permit.”


special report

21st century engagement The IGD reports that wholesale is a £29.5 billion sector, with convenience and out-of-home channels forecasted to grow by double digits in the next five years. But with conglomerate giants now threatening to stamp their authority on an increasingly fragmented market, the importance of working together to harness technological growth has never been greater.


account for nearly half of its total business and while Ahmed acknowledged the cost implications of implementing new technology, he urged wholesalers to “be brave” and refrain from being a “closed door environment”. Summarising the state of the sector, IGD chief economist James Walton reinforced Ahmed’s stance and emphasised the importance of utilising business partnerships and revitalising cash & carries to stay relevant and price competitive. He commented: “Consumers need a compelling reason to come back and although there is measured optimism for the future, wholesalers need to reinvent the depot experience to drive category sales.” Simon Hannah, managing director at JW Filshill, added his voice to the debate, saying: “We need to encourage everyone to improve and create a culture where there are sufficient rewards and incentives to invest in technology and trial new ideas.” Meanwhile, FWD chairman Martin Williams called on the sector to adopt a more collaborative solution to combat the growth of discount and online stores, as well as a possible price war between the major multiples. Williams insisted: “The only way we can succeed in this sector is by working together with our suppliers.” The theme of the event replicated that of the FWD Conference earlier this summer, with Chris Doyle and John Kinney from Landmark and Today’s Group respectively addressing the importance of collaboration and data insight. But as David Shukri, head of channel insight at IGD, noted during a panel discussion, there seems to be a reluctance to share data, with each buying group wary of losing its competitive advantage by disclosing “sensitive information”. Although understandable, such secrecy serves only to illustrate the barriers that currently prevent the sector from working as a harmonious and single entity. As Mark Twain once said, “Action speaks louder than words”.

Cash & Carry Management

• September 2014 • 13

All data unless otherwise stated: IGD

Anx Patel: ‘Manufacturers and wholesalers should recognise where future growth is.’

IGD estimates the total value of online ordering in wholesale at £1.7 billion, growing by 13%

Photography: Andrew Fox

Perhaps it was his brazen personality, or even his youthful energy, that had 180 suppliers, wholesalers and retailers captivated by GoKart founder and CEO Anx Patel’s impassioned presentation at the IGD Conference in London. But while Patel’s proclamation that “we are in a war” may have been issued with a hint of hyperbole, it was his earlier plea to “get behind mobile technology” that resonated most amongst the guests in attendance. Citing Amazon and Alibaba’s plans to diversify into the UK wholesale channel, Patel pointed to the digital investments made by Palmer and Harvey and Bestway, and encouraged manufacturers and wholesalers to “stop following” and recognise where the future growth is. GoKart’s B2B mobile ordering app was developed to “capitalise on the smartphone revolution”, claimed Patel, with its customisable format, order capture systems and loyalty schemes offering a free mobile marketplace that is “light years ahead of Amazon”. The added convenience of being in your customer’s pocket 24 hours a day represents an “unmissable opportunity”, according to Patel, who also highlighted the Facebook generation as “current and future customers”. His views were echoed by Jo Harwood, director of VIP and new channels at Burton’s Biscuit Company, who spoke at length about mobile optimisation and working more closely together. To improve the “accessibility and efficiency” of online depots, she underlined the benefits of incorporating a taxonomy structure, favourites tab and category advice media placements to drive customer loyalty. Harwood also unveiled Burton’s ‘SnackToGo’ app, exclusively for the wholesale channel, while Mushtaque Ahmed, chief operating officer at JJ Food Service, showcased the benefits of the company’s FOODIt website and how interchanging data and sharing technological expertise can help to “simplify the shopper experience downstream”. IGD figures show that JJ Food Service’s online sales


sponsored by

‘Deliver on your promises’ This month’s article features United Wholesale Scotland’s managing director Asim Sarwar. What has been the major milestone or turning point of your career? The launch of our Queenslie branch in Glasgow in 2007 set the platform for me and United Wholesale Scotland to reach the next level. It gave us our first ‘all under one roof’ depot, which was ideal for distribution. Before that, we were picking one order from two different depots. Opening Queenslie allowed us to create our distribution centre and we reinvested heavily in technology, allowing us to treble our efficiency. It also enabled us to operate our own Bond, which gave us a major advantage on licensed products. Lastly, it gave us space. Our Maxwell Road branch was then only 11,000 sq ft and our West Street depot was 12,000 sq ft, so having 170,000 sq ft was a dream come true, especially for the trading team.

Wholesaler man and boy Asim Sarwar grew up in the wholesale sector: he started working in the family-owned cash & carry at seven years old. By the age of 18, he had worked in every department of the business. Sarwar studied pharmacy at university while at the same time managing and operating the company’s non-food cash & carry at West Street, Glasgow. Sarwar left university and joined his brother Athif full-time in the business. In 2007, he took over as managing director and has been running the company ever since. Now 32, Sarwar became the youngest ever president of the Scottish Wholesale Association when he was appointed to the post last year. He was also named a ‘Top New Talent’ by The Grocer. United Wholesale Scotland will shortly open its third branch: a 65,000 sq ft cash & carry in Newbridge, Edinburgh.

Who has been the biggest inspiration to you? My father, Governor Mohammed Sarwar. He proved that, with hard work and determination, you can achieve anything you want. He was brought up in a village in rural Pakistan, came to UK with nothing and became a multi-millionaire and the first Muslim MP in the UK. How do you maintain a work/life balance and how have developments in technology affected this? I don’t! Work comes first! What most frustrates you in business and in life generally? Letting someone down. I think it’s crucial in your personal life and business to deliver on the promises you have made. If you were able to retire tomorrow, would you, and if so, how would you spend your time? I wouldn’t retire yet. I love my role and I thoroughly enjoy my work! I grew up in this sector and I would like to end my career in this sector. What advice would you give someone starting his/her first job? Listen, learn, don’t be afraid to ask questions and, most importantly, give it your all. What type of business would you have gone into if it wasn’t C&C/wholesale? The music business – I would love to be a pop star! I like hip hop/R&B/dance music. My favourite artist/track at the moment is Drake 0 to 100.

A young Asim Sarwar: would you have recognised him?


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

If you had a million pounds to invest in business, how would you spend the money? I would stick to what I know and use the money to try to open another depot.










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For further information:

www.cashandcarrymanagement.co.uk tel: 01342 712100


Last year’s winners at Hedsor House in Taplow, the impressive setting for Cash & Carry Management’s 2013 AWARDS lunch.

For the 11th year running, Cash & Carry Management incorporating Delivered Wholesaler is publishing a league table of the Top 25 Suppliers in England, Wales and Ireland. Each month for the next three months, readers are invited to award each supplier points based on the previous month’s performance. Please email your scores to mail.winlove@btconnect.com or complete the form opposite and post it to Winlove Publications Ltd, FREEPOST NAT 15060, PO Box 366, East Grinstead, RH19 4BR.

Comment from last year’s winner, Mondelez: “We are absolutely delighted to finish top of the table in this, our first year of trading under our new name (formerly Kraft Foods). It is great recognition for what we – the whole team – have achieved. “We take enormous pride in receiving this award. While we have great ideas and concepts, we always make sure that we listen to our customers’ needs.” Susan Nash, trade communications manager at Mondelez, who accepted the top award – and the company’s two other accolades – from Martin Lovell, managing director of Cash & Carry Management.

TOP 25 SUPPLIERS Please email your scores to mail.winlove@btconnect.com or post this page (no stamp required) to: Winlove Publications Ltd FREEPOST NAT 15060 PO Box 366 East Grinstead RH19 4BR

Now in their 11th year, Cash & Carry Management’s AWARDS recognise and reward the efforts of the best suppliers to the trade and are entirely judged by C&Cs/delivered wholesalers.

Top 25 Suppliers (max. 30 points) Accolade Wines Britvic Soft Drinks Carlsberg

your votes

Coca-Cola Enterprises Diageo GlaxoSmithKline

The top 25 suppliers in England, Wales and Ireland, as voted by readers of Cash & Carry Management, are listed opposite.

Heineken Heinz

Each month for the next three months, readers are invited to award each supplier points based on the previous month’s performance.

Imperial Tobacco Johnson & Johnson

Please consider the following when assessing your top 25 suppliers:



Operations: deliveries, supplier contact, admin support, complaint handling Support: marketing and promotional activity, advice on merchandising and ranging, customer development Wholesale focus: right products, competitive pricing, appropriate packaging, understanding of wholesale marketplace


Kerry Foods Mars Mondelez Nestlé

(including Cadbury)

(including Professional)

PepsiCo Pernod Ricard Premier Foods

Name ............................................................

Procter & Gamble


Red Bull

Address ......................................................... ..................................................................... .....................................................................



Tate & Lyle Unilever United Biscuits

products & promotions New formulation

OTT flavours

HEINZ – The company has launched a new and improved Squeeze & Stir range of soups that promises to deliver a ‘richer and thicker consistency’ for the most popular flavours found in the Heinz Classic canned range. The Squeeze & Stir range includes Cream of Tomato (one of your five-aday), Cream of Chicken, Cream of Mushroom, and Carrot & Coriander variants. By developing the recipes, Heinz has created an instant soup that, when ready, is closer than ever before in taste and consistency to Heinz’s canned varieties. The packaging is also now easier to open, thanks to a change in the tear perforation. Tel: Heinz (0800) 528 5757.

Macphie of Glenbervie – The addedvalue food ingredients manufacturer has introduced two new flavours to its range of O.T.T. dessert sauces. Maple Flavoured Syrup and Salted Caramel now join the existing range of Strawberry, Raspberry, Butterscotch, Chocolate and Toffee flavours. Gillian Williamson, category marketing manager, says: “With growth in added-value breakfast products with an American theme, O.T.T. Maple Flavoured Syrup provides the perfect accompaniment for pancakes, waffles or as a dipping sauce for churros. “With an increase of 366% in salted caramel products globally (Mintel), we can now offer chefs an easy way to incorporate this delicious flavour into all their menu favourites.” The Macphie range of O.T.T. dessert sauces has a long shelf life and is free from artificial colours, flavours and hydrogenated oils. Tel: Macphie (01569) 740641.

Best of both MONDELEZ INTERNATIONAL – Cadbury Dairy Milk Oreo, which combines the UK’s number one chocolate brand (Nielsen) and the world’s favourite biscuit (Euromonitor), is now available in a single format. The Cadbury Dairy Milk Oreo countline is part of a growing range of co-branded products, joining tablets including Cadbury Dairy Milk Daim and the recently launched Cadbury Dairy Milk Chips Ahoy. The whole co-branded range will be supported by a £2m UK marketing investment, including PR, outdoor advertising, digital and in-store activity. Matthew Williams, marketing activation director, says: “This is a great opportunity for retailers to take advantage of two power brands and drive incremental sales. “With high-profile media investment for co-branded products throughout 2014, retailers should stock up to make the most of increased excitement and awareness.” Tel: Mondelez International (08702) 400861.


City campaign HEINEKEN – The cider and beer company has unveiled a new on-pack design for its 33cl Heineken bottles in the latest phase of its global ‘Open Your City’ campaign. The new City Edition suite of bottles aligns the brand with consumers who are living in the heart of the city and is part of a Heineken Global initiative that will distribute two billion bottles globally, replacing all 33cl bottles for a limited period. The range is designed to encourage consumers to interact with Heineken’s Cities of the World campaign. The new Heineken bottles will be supported in the off-trade by a bottlecap activation offering consumers the opportunity to take part in the ‘Greatest City Adventures’ and stand a chance to win a range of prizes from merchandise to a 72-hour adventure. Tel: Heineken (01937) 832091.

Take two WALKERS NONSUCH – The toffee maker has launched a new Toffee Twin pack, which contains two creamy toffee bars along with a toffee hammer. Instructions on how to break the bars are included on the back of the pack along with a brief history of the company. Each bar has a clear tray protecting the look of the toffee bar, ensuring the segments are retained and therefore easy to break. Each case contains 12 x 200g Toffee Twin packs. Walkers has been making toffee for over 100 years and only uses premium ingredients, including whole milk and butter. Tel: Walkers Nonsuch (01752) 752095.

• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

Fruity variant AG BARR – Rockstar Xdurance is now available in Electric Fruits flavour. Rockstar Xdurance is currently the UK’s fastest-selling big-can flavoured energy drink. Energy drinks are worth £952 million and growing by 8% year on year, with big-can energy formats driving the category with growth of 19%. Within big-can energy, flavoured variants are still the key drivers, growing at 52%, and Rockstar continues to lead this trend with a 56% share of the flavoured energy market and seven of the top 10 fastestselling big-can energy flavours. X d u r a n c e Electric Fruits performed well in consumer taste tests, with 76% saying they would buy the product (LVQ Research). All data Nielsen unless otherwise stated.

Tel: AG Barr (01204) 664200.


products & promotions Bite with a bark

Better than ever KEPAK CONVENIENCE FOODS – Rustlers Tikka Chicken Hot Naan has new flowrap packaging and now also contains more chicken than previously. Marketing director John Armstrong says: “Rustlers Tikka Chicken Hot Naan has a clear point of difference to other ‘hot, quick and tasty’ products, enabling people to enjoy one of their favourite Indian flavours in a quick-tocook format. “The new flowrap pack and better shelf standout will attract even more shoppers and revised chicken content will provide consumers with an even more satisfying micro-snack.” With annual sales of £78m, Rustlers is the UK’s number one micro-snacking brand (IRI). Research shows that seven out of 10 consumers prefer Rustlers to other micro burgers (independent market research). Tel: Kepak Convenience Foods (01772) 688300.

Less is more MARS CHOCOLATE – Galaxy Little Treat is a new, smaller 23g treat-sized bar of Galaxy chocolate. Consumers are increasingly looking for value for money, and with treating continuing its strong growth and the small singles market rising by 11% (IRI), Galaxy Little Treat aims to fill a gap in the market. To support the launch of this new format, Mars is providing retailers with PoS materials, pop-up units, posters and wobblers. Galaxy Little Treat also comes in a show box header and case trays, suited for impulsive sales at till points. Galaxy is the UK’s number two chocolate brand (SIG supermarkets). Tel: Mars Chocolate (01844) 262517.

MARS PETCARE – Pedigree Tasty Bites is a new range of bite-sized treats for dogs. Available in four varieties and textures including Cheesy Nibbles, Chewy Slices, Chewy Cubes, and Crunchy Pockets, the range contains omega-3 vitamins and minerals. Caroline Mabon, brand manager, comments: “Treats play a role in strengthening the bond between owners and their dogs. New Pedigree Tasty Bites are a range of tasty and meaty bite-size treats packed in a resealable pouch, which makes them perfect for owners to create more of those bonding moments wherever they are.” The launch is being supported with in-store PoS, and display units will be available later in the year to drive awareness of the new range. Tel: Mars Petcare (01664) 411111.

Mini promotion QUINTESSENTIAL BRANDS – Greenall’s The Original London Dry Gin has launched a ‘Win a Mini’ on-pack promotion in the UK, which features on the brand’s redesigned bottle. Consumers can win a Mini Cooper by visiting the Greenall’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/greenallsgin and entering the last three digits on the barcode of a bottle of Greenall’s. In addition, there are monthly giveaways of Kindles, Netflix subscriptions and bottles of Greenall’s. To enhance the product’s position as the ‘Original’ London Dry Gin, the bottle redesign includes the signature of founder Thomas Dakin, who first distilled Greenall’s in 1761. The brand has seen a 63% rise in sales in the last year and is the fastest growing of the top 10 gin brands in the UK (Nielsen). Tel: Quintessential Brands 020-7494 3138.


Bigger value IMPERIAL TOBACCO – Lambert & Butler Blue Superkings 19s are now available in both full flavour and smooth variants. Currently, over 48% of cigarettes in the economy-priced sector sold by retailers are above king size (ITUK estimates). This reflects the increasing number of consumers who are seeking better value for money from their tobacco purchases. L&B Blue Superkings provides consumers with a longer cigarette at a value price as well as capturing the increasing number of adult smokers who are downtrading. L&B Blue Superkings has an rsp of £6.79, with £6.55 price-marked packs available while stocks last. Imperial Tobacco has lowered its PMP price for L&B Blue King Size 19s from £6.62 to £6.50, and L&B Blue Smooth King Size 19s PMP from £6.62 to £6.50. Tel: Imperial Tobacco (0117) 963 6636.

Scent-sational PROCTER & GAMBLE – Lenor Unstoppables is a new bead-format fabric conditioner aimed at longer lasting freshness. The beads contain nine times more perfume ingredients than the Lenor classic range and consumers can personalise the scent intensity by choosing the quantity of beads they use, either shaking a little or a lot into the cap. Lenor Unstoppables is available in three new scents, Fresh, Lavish, and Bliss, in a 275g or 375g bottle (with an rsp of £5 or £6 respectively). There is also a smaller 30g trial sachet available for 70p. The launch is being supported with TV advertising and a sampling campaign. Tel: Procter & Gamble (01932) 896000.

Cash & Carry Management

• September 2014 • 19

: Spreading Smart Ideas Kerrymaid has redefined the spreads category based on what matters to chefs, after conducting independent research to fully understand their needs. We know that chefs choose a spread based on its usage occasion, and our portfolio meets the needs of all operators.

Kerrymaid Buttery The great all rounder

“Our pub menu changes from week to week and having versatile kitchen staples like Kerrymaid Buttery is what makes this possible. Because it consistently cooks, bakes and spreads, we only need one product; saving space in the fridge, and avoid buying in three types of spread. Food wastage is an important issue, and any product that helps us

Also available in


Mini Portions – perfect for front of house

back-of-house, works for me!” – Pub licensee, London “Flavour is king, and that’s why we use Kerrymaid Buttery in our cooking. It adds a luxurious richness when we fry our steaks, and carries our seasoning well when grilling our seafood. Our customers want a rich experience when eating out, so this is the perfect product.” – Restaurant manager, Crawley “We serve a versatile mix of light bites, including baked goods to accompany our hot drinks, hearty soups and sandwiches. Kerrymaid Buttery makes sense for us because we can use it in all these recipes – from baking to spreading straight from the fridge, with the great taste of butter – Café owner, Manchester

Spreads – straight from the fridge with the creamy taste of butter Bakes – for the best-tasting, baked products across a breadth of recipes Cooks – melt and heat stable, does not burn and no residue

#SpreadingSmartIdeas @KerrymaidDairy

Kerrymaid Premium Baking For the serious baker

“With a recent surge of popularity in baking, we are seeing increased demand for scratch products from our customers. Kerrymaid Premium Baking is a professional product that delivers results we can rely on. It adds a great colour on cakes and pastries, with an even bake – and excellent ‘homemade’ flavours. We also use it when baking sponges, as it aids a good rise and provides an even texture. The block format with measuring guide makes it really simple to portion by sight.” – Bakery owner, Eastbourne

75% vegetable fat spread Easy-to-measure guide on pack

Kerrymaid Soft & Spreadable

Lower in saturated fat

“Sandwiches, rolls and baguettes are the stars of our busy lunchtime trade. We make these to order, so it’s essential to have a product that spreads straight from the fridge with a buttery taste – like Kerrymaid Soft & Spreadable. Nutritional guidelines are more stringent than ever, so it’s reassuring to know we’re using a healthier spread that still tastes great.” – Contract caterer, Coventry

Spreads straight from the fridge Creamy taste of butter Lower in saturated fat and sodium No hydrogenated fat

Contact us to find out how Kerrymaid can better meet your customers’ needs with its complete range of spreads

T: 0800 783 4321

E: info@kerry-foodservice.co.uk

: @KerrymaidDairy

Irish Dairy Craft

W: www.kerrymaid.co.uk


Achievers Best Service shortlist Wholesalers in Scotland are asked to score each supplier based on its performance in August. AUGUST PERFORMANCE

Deliveries inc Admin (max. 15 points) write N/A if not direct

Supplier Contact (max. 15 points)

Scottish Focus (max. 15 points)

Packaging & Merchandising (max. 5 points)

TOTAL (max. 50 points)

AB InBev AG Barr Bacardi Brown-Forman Britvic Soft Drinks C&C Group

(inc Magners/Tennent’s)

Coca-Cola Enterprises Cott Beverages Danone Diageo Heineken Highland Spring Imperial Tobacco JTI Kellogg’s Lucozade Ribena Suntory Mars Maxxium Molson Coors Mondelez Nestlé 1st Choice PepsiCo


(inc Walkers)

Pernod Ricard Premier Foods

(inc Foodservice)

Red Bull Tayto

(Golden Wonder)

Tunnock’s Unilever United Biscuits


Whyte & Mackay

Contact name & company ...........................................................................


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

Please email your completed form to: kirsti.sharratt@virgin.net or fax to 01334 479695



Judging criteria Cash & carries and delivered wholesalers in Scotland giving points to the top 29 suppliers in contention for the Achievers award of Best Overall Service (see p.22) are asked to use the detailed criteria below over the four-month judging period. All suppliers on the shortlist will be sent their results each month and encouraged to act on the findings to enhance their service. The final outcome will be announced at the Achievers awards dinner on 12 February 2015.


For each supplier, if you receive deliveries from your own company’s central warehouse, write N/A

maximum 15 points Order versus quantities delivered Accuracy of paperwork Accuracy of invoices Timescale of deliveries Attitude and helpfulness of driver Effective returns process Helpfulness of staff

4 3 3 2 1 1 1


maximum 15 points Ability to make key decisions Written/oral communications Query handling and problem resolution Frequency of contact Proactive attitude Field resource

3 3 3 2 2 2


maximum 15 points Category/market information Scottish marketing focus No conflicting direct-to-retail sales Dedicated Scottish direct/indirect sales team


4 4 4 3

maximum 5 points Relevant pack strategy Merchandising support Stand-out on shelf

2 2 1 Maximum total marks 50

Any queries, please contact Kirsti Sharratt on (01334) 479695


Cash & Carry Management

• September 2014 • 23

employment law

Harsher penalties for employers Human resources expert Cate Ritchie (right) assesses the implications of the Small Business Enterprise and Employment Bill. On 25 June, the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill was published. The key employment law changes that will be introduced if the Bill comes into force in its present format are listed below: Enforcing employment tribunal awards and settlements Currently, around half of all claimants who win their cases in an employment tribunal never receive payment of the sum of money awarded to them. To try to address this problem, the Bill will introduce a new system of financial penalties for employers who fail to pay the award ordered. Firstly, a warning notice will be issued by an enforcement officer stating that unless the sum due is paid within 28 days, a financial penalty will be imposed. Then if the sum due is not paid within that 28-day period, a penalty notice will be issued which will require the employer to pay a financial penalty equivalent to 50% of the original award to the Secretary of State (with a minimum of £100 and a maximum of £5,000). If the employer, within 14 days, then pays both the original award to the claimant and the financial penalty to the Secretary of State, the financial penalty is reduced by 50%.

References: play it safe! A reference request lands on your desk...you reach for your pen to fill it out. A recent case was a reminder that, in the real world, things do not always go smoothly. AB v Chief Constable concerned a senior police officer with 24 years’ service. Before leaving the force, disciplinary proceedings were instigated against him. After a period of long-term sickness absence and just before the disciplinary hearing took place, AB resigned from the police to take up a job with a regulatory body. In its reference request, the body asked for details of AB’s sickness absence and disciplinary history. The police force had implemented the practice of providing standard references for employees who left the force and therefore issued AB with a standard, factual reference. The deputy chief constable of the police force in question learned that only a factual reference had been supplied to AB’s new employer and decided to send a further reference, which included information about the disciplinary hearing and sickness absence. The case reached The High Court, which decided that although the police force does have a duty to act honestly


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

Financial penalties for failure to pay the national minimum wage There is currently a £20,000 maximum penalty in place for the failure to pay the national minimum wage. This Bill amends the National Minimum Wage Act 1998 so that the £20,000 maximum penalty applies in respect of each worker that is underpaid. This will significantly raise the stakes in terms of non-compliance with the national minimum wage. Zero hours contracts The Bill amends the Employment Rights Act by introducing a definition of a zero hours contract. It will also render clauses in such contracts preventing workers from working for someone else unenforceable. Reporting of whistleblowing protected disclosures The Bill amends the Employment Rights Act to require ”prescribed persons” under the whistleblowing legislation to produce annual reports on all whistleblowing disclosures made to them. It is proposed that these reports will not contain the names of the people who made the disclosures. If you need further guidance in this area, or if you wish to talk to Cate about any other HR issue, contact her at cate@121hrsolutions.co.uk or phone (0792) 121 3890.

and with integrity, that was effectively trumped, firstly by its data protection duties because the information in the extra reference constituted sensitive personal data, and secondly by its specific duty to AB, who had been led to believe that a standard reference would be provided. Although this case involved a public body subject to more rigorous public law duties than most employers, here are some useful pointers for giving references: If an employer decides to provide a reference, it has to exercise reasonable care and skill to ensure that the reference is true, accurate, fair and not misleading. Employers providing references owe a duty of care to both the recipient and the person who is the subject matter of the reference. References are likely to constitute personal information and potentially sensitive personal data if, for example, they contain details about sickness absence, so employers must ensure they are complying with the data protection principles. A reference as part of a settlement agreement should include a provision that allows the employer to refuse to provide a reference if it finds out information after the settlement is concluded that alters its opinion of the employee.

• • •


Success with IT Page 2 Swords delivers impressive results at Regal Wholesale

Page 3 Sanderson pivotal in launching new chilled project at Barry Group

Page 4 Online ordering enhances customer service and increases sales and profits


5 Star shines with Sanderson wholesale IT solution Based in East London, 5 Star (Edible) Products Ltd supplies an extensive range of food products, drinks and catering supplies to the restaurant trade. With a growing product range and increasing demand for its catering supplies, the company selected the Sanderson wholesale IT solution, Swords, to increase operational efficiencies, improve stock control and provide visibility of information across the business. 5 Star will benefit from instant access to accurate stock information, allowing staff to upsell and cross-sell additional products to boost sales. Swords will integrate 5 Star’s key operations and offer a single view of the business, delivering essential data to the busy accounts department. The information will be used to support demand forecasting and purchase planning, to make effective use of the company’s cash flow, and to create valuable


eliminating the need to re-key orders.

reports for informed decision-making. 5 Star is also implementing the very latest Sanderson online ordering solution to offer customers a faster, more streamlined ordering process, with a convenient 24-hour facility. This dynamic solution empowers customers, enabling them to manage their account, as well as view promotions, choose from a selection of delivery schedules and track their orders, enhancing service levels and increasing sales. The online ordering system also saves valuable time by

Yogesh Gandhi, Director of 5 Star (Edible) Products Ltd, comments: “We are delighted to have Sanderson on board with us during our very busy growth period. Swords will help us manage and control the business as well as provide first-class customer service with the online ordering solution which will undoubtedly take our business to the next level. And we know that our restaurant customers will find this facility highly valuable in ordering catering supplies late at night.” 5 Star (Edible) Products Ltd Established in 1983, the company has grown from a small London premise to a multi-million pound empire. With an extensive food and drink product range, the company is located on a 1.5-acre East London site, housing a cash & carry, a warehouse and an ever-expanding restaurant supply service.

Page 1

Success with IT

The Royal treatment Acclaimed distributor and wholesaler of discounted household goods, Regal Wholesale has successfully expanded its product range, improved operational efficiency and ventured into international markets, all thanks to a partnership spanning more than a decade with IT solution provider, Sanderson. The company is now thriving in the world of online ordering and enjoying annual growth of 18%. Regal is currently trialling the Swords mobile barcode scanner; this allows customers to scan product barcodes and upload orders to the online system directly, resulting in even more time saving as well as helping build a more cohesive picture of customer demand. The biggest focus for Regal is online trading and the Swords online ordering functionality is proving instrumental in helping the company access new markets. Established in 1984 as a small family business in the Merseyside area, Regal Wholesale has expanded its operations substantially. The company supplies a wide range of products, including toiletries, groceries and confectionery, and has recently seen a growth in international trade, with customers in 38 countries worldwide. Using an old DOS-based system, Regal Wholesale was struggling to get the information it needed to run the business. “We chose Swords because it provided everything we needed from a fully integrated system,” says Project Manager, Alison James. As soon as the company implemented the Sanderson solution, things changed dramatically. Instant visibility The company had instant visibility of its operations and efficiency was massively improved as a result. “From the moment you put an order into Swords, to the moment it’s dispatched, being able to see its progress up and down the chain eradicates any guesswork,” says James. “It makes everything much slicker and saves huge amounts of time.”

Page 2

Warehouse efficiency The wholesaler recently relocated to a purpose-built warehouse facility, increasing floor space to 45,000 square feet. To coincide with the move, Regal added zone picking to its Sword’s functionality, complementing the Radio Frequency (RF) scanning introduced some years earlier, and bringing significant improvements in warehouse efficiency, stock control and customer service. Handheld RF devices mean warehouse staff are instantly updated with tasks, transmitted in location order to help speed up picking time. “For goods inwards we are able to scan deliveries straight off the truck, adding to the efficiency of new dock loading bays which has reduced unloading time from three hours to just 20 minutes since the move,” explains James. “And zone picking is helping us manage orders much better. The Swords system is configured so that any orders that equate to more than 75% of the pick face are taken directly from the bulk location. It halves the time spent picking the order. That makes a massive difference.”

Online sales growth “Our efforts this year have been on improving the website and growing online sales and the web is becoming increasingly fundamental to our business,” says James. Indeed, online orders now represent 25% of sales and the figure is increasing following a recent upgrade to the website: the site now boasts improved product information, with enhanced images and an advanced search tool. “We've seen a 10% increase in web sales inside three months, since we introduced Swords’ improved online ordering functionality,” says James. The Swords wholesale solution from Sanderson has underpinned Regal Wholesale’s growth for more than a decade, from physical expansion to online trading. It’s a partnership that continues to deliver impressive results. “Swords has provided the framework to facilitate growth that could not have otherwise been achieved. Visibility, efficiency, improved communication and an expanding online business presence have all helped open up new lines of opportunity. It really adds value to our business,” concludes James.


Success with IT

Beacon of success Barry Group is one of Ireland’s leading wholesale and distribution groups. Supported by IT solutions provider Sanderson, it provides a wide range of services for more than 1,000 customers. The Barry Group is responsible for the franchises Costcutter, Carry Out, Quik Pick in Ireland and supplies the pub trade and catering sectors. It also trades internationally with over 20 countries. Having worked with Sanderson and its wholesale IT solution, Swords, for over 20 years, Barry Group added new online ordering, Radio Frequency scanners (RF), and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) functionality to great success. Dramatically improved picking efficiency, increased sales and better customer service have all been delivered as a result. The Barry Group took this experience into its latest strategic venture – the challenging chilled distribution market. The ‘Chill Chain’, as it is known, is notoriously difficult to manage because chilled produce has to be kept below a certain temperature from source to consumer. “Maintaining the integrity of the chill chain is absolutely key,” explains Head of IT, Peter O’Sullivan. “The way the chilled distribution works is unique,” says O'Sullivan. “The standard method of raising orders is just too slow; customers need to be able to look at the shelf in their shop, and make a decision there and then on the right product to order.” A highly visual, user-friendly and efficient web ordering portal was

required to handle such a difficult supply chain. For Barry Group, there was only one choice: opting for Swords to lead its new business venture. Web-ordering portal Sanderson has been pivotal in launching the company’s new chilled distribution business, through the development of the web-ordering portal, Beacon (Barry’s Easy Access Central Ordering Network) that offers Barry Group customers a three-day order turnaround time. Barry Group operates a ‘pick-to-zero’ system using a third-party distributor, Cuisine de France, and its chill facility in Dublin. Customers use tablets supplied by Barry Group to raise orders via the Swords system; these are processed at the chill facility the next day and delivered the following morning. The Sanderson system interfaces with Cuisine de France’s own ERP system and auto-converts transactions into purchase orders, so they can be picked and dispatched by Cuisine de France, with each link in the chain monitored for a smooth service. “It’s much easier for our customers to raise orders now. They don’t even have to be in the shop as the system is always accessible,” enthuses O’Sullivan. “The web solution is also completely responsive, so it works on any mobile device. That flexibility is a huge benefit.” Positive customer feedback Customer reaction to the new offering has been incredibly positive. “The appetite for it and speed of penetration has impressed us. They love using the Sanderson web portal and keep asking if they can use it for everything; Beacon is now their channel of choice. Not only that, we’ve also won some significant new


independent business on the strength of our chill offering.” The interactive and accessible interface has hugely improved the opportunity for Barry Group to offer advice to customers, and crucially to upsell with sections designated to promotions. The web portal isn’t the only aspect of the Sanderson solution that has enabled the business to thrive. “The Sanderson solution handles stock control, logistics and central billing. It’s much more than just a warehouse management system,” explains O’Sullivan. “Alongside the CRM functionality and Beacon, it controls our daily lives inside the warehouse, from goods in, through to stock control, picking, packing, despatch and invoicing.” Providing better customer service, maximising pick rates, managing the warehouse and improving efficiencies across the business, the Sanderson solution is continuing to add value to the company, and the new Beacon portal is enabling Barry Group to see real business growth in a tumultuous economy. “We wouldn’t have a chill business without Beacon, and we wouldn’t have Beacon without Sanderson,” concludes O’Sullivan. “It’s been a game changer for us. Beacon has become a one-stop shop and the most visible way to interact with our customers.”

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Success with IT

5 reasons to offer your customers online ordering A 24-hour online ordering system strengthens customer service and grows sales by offering a faster, streamlined ordering process with more choice and control over delivery schedules and order tracking. It will complement your current offering. As an example, leading wholesaler Regal Wholesale recently launched an online ordering service designed to enhance, rather than replace, current service offerings. See page 2 for full details. The introduction of an online ordering service for your customers can be mutually beneficial to both your business and your customer’s business. Here are five main reasons why you should be implementing one: 1. Increasing sales through a 24/7 society Many of your customers operate in sectors which involve them being at

work when you may not be. They may want to order when you are closed and you don’t want to miss out on these sales. Online ordering will allow your customers to order when it suits them and the order will be waiting for you when you start work the next morning. 2. Helping the repeat customer An online ordering system can keep a record of your customers’ accounts and set up regular order lists to speed up ordering, letting them get on with running their businesses and resulting in more content customers. 3. Fitting in with your customers’ schedules Your customers don’t always have the

Sanderson is a publicly owned UK provider of software solutions to the delivered wholesale and cash & carry industries. Its wholesale IT solution, Swords, integrates all business operations, reduces administrative costs, enhances customer service and strengthens operations for future growth. Swords is a single integrated system, used by more than 150 wholesale and cash & carry businesses across the UK to manage operations and improve profits. The latest solutions include Mobile CRM – boosting staff productivity with remote access to Swords away from the office – and Voice Order Picking, which reduces costly picking errors.

Page 4

time to go to your depot, so if you can provide an online ordering service that fits in with their schedule, all the better. 4. Enhancing service to customers An online ordering facility means that you are offering your customers a choice of how they deal with you. Also a mobile barcode scanner can be used to capture products for re-ordering and uploading the details into the system, saving valuable time. 5. Improving communications The wholesale industry is so competitive that you need to take advantage of every opportunity to gain the edge over your rivals.

Publishing Director: Martin Lovell Published by Winlove Publications Ltd on behalf of: Sanderson Sanderson House, Manor Road, Coventry, CV1 2GF Tel: 0333 123 1400 Fax: 0333 123 1401 Email: info@sanderson.com www.sanderson.com/swords


legal advice

Directors – know your duties! Consultant legal counsel Helen Jenkins (below) from Legal Edge looks at the legal duties you take on when you become a company director. As a company director, duties and responsibilities broadly fall into two categories: those you owe to the company you work for or that has appointed you and those that are personal to you under other laws. They apply whether you are an executive director or a non-executive director and, in some circumstances, even if you haven’t been formally appointed (a de-facto director). Headline duties under the Companies Act 2006 start with the obvious – undertaking administrative duties and preparing accounts. They also include: acting within the powers given to directors as contained in the company’s constitution and only acting for that purpose; promoting the success of the company; exercising independent judgement, reasonable care, skill and diligence; avoiding conflicts of interest and not taking benefits from third parties, as well as declaring personal interests in any company transactions. Other key areas where you have general duties: Bribery X You aren’t allowed to bribe another person (or be bribed) to achieve a benefit for your business. Competition 4 You must determine pricing and commercial strategy independently of your competitors. Fraud X Where you are expected to safeguard someone else’s financial interests, you are not allowed to abuse that position. Health & Safety 4 You have to safeguard the health and well-being of employees, visitors and contractors whilst at work. Insolvency ! If there is no reasonable prospect that your company can avoid liquidation, you cannot knowingly continue to trade. What happens if you get it wrong? If you breach a duty owed to your company, you could find yourself facing claims for damages, recovery of profits, an injunction to prevent you moving assets or termination of your employment contract. The penalties for other breaches of duty can be farreaching. In July 2014, the director of a masonry company was given a 10-month prison sentence for failing to protect his workforce! Getting it wrong could lead to: Up to 15 years’ disqualification from acting as a director for fraudulent or wrongful/insolvent trading. A prison term of up to five years, an unlimited fine or disqualification for serious acts of anti-competitive behaviour. Large fines or even imprisonment for breaching health and safety law duties.

• • •


The good news is that directors are not usually liable for errors of judgment if they acted honestly and reasonably. If it is fair to do so, a court may excuse that liability. How can you be a dutiful director? Getting your house in order and avoiding liabilities in the first place is the key. Here are some quick tips to help you stay on the right side of the law. Start with the building blocks. Get to know your company’s articles of association – it’s the document that regulates the internal workings of the organisation and will tell you the process for running board meetings, any restrictions on your powers as a director and more. Be proactive! Understand your role within the company and get to grips with the laws that apply to wholesalers. Don’t assume that other directors can safely be left to manage the company’s business. Make sure the processes are in place. Hold regular board, management meetings and reviews. Ensure that accurate minutes are taken and kept. Insist on regular financial reports and projections and review them. Keep others in the loop. Even though you are ultimately responsible, ensure that employees involved in preparing board papers and presentations also understand directors’ duties. Check your insurance position. A directors and officers liability insurance policy cannot protect you from legal action but, in some circumstances, can cover the costs of legal advice and damages awarded by the court. If the company doesn’t have such a policy, consider it. Don’t sit on your hands. If you’re not happy with the way your company is being run, call a board meeting to discuss your concerns. It is important that your opinions are recorded as this could help you if business decisions are later scrutinised. In some cases, you may want to take legal advice for yourself first.

• • •

Legal Edge is a team of commercially astute and experienced in-house legal counsel. If you need help in training directors and managers on their duties in a practical hands-on way, contact Helen Jenkins at helen.jenkins@legaledge.co.uk.

Cash & Carry Management

• September 2014 • 29

sales/marketing & brokerage

Strategic outsourcing With the wholesale sector becoming increasingly responsive to latest trends, more UK brand owners are now outsourcing services to external agencies to help maximise sales opportunities. Forward-thinking brand owners are increasingly recognising the benefits of outsourcing sales, trade marketing and distribution to specialist partners, according to Robinson Young, with in-house services failing to replicate the specialism, focus and results provided by external agencies. “Understanding the market and having a high-quality sales team with a good understanding of buyers’ and wholesalers’ needs is the key to success,” explains Michael Robinson, managing director of Robinson Young. “Many brands that have neglected the wholesale and cash & carry sector in recent years suddenly find themselves at a disadvantage. The growth in the convenience market and the resurgence of local shopping means that being able to supply the sector is crucial to their brands’ continued success.”

‘Many brands that have neglected the wholesale and cash & carry sector in recent years suddenly find themselves at a disadvantage’ Michael Robinson, managing director, Robinson Young As a result, Robinson advises brand owners to reassess their internal services and take advantage of Robinson Young’s expertise, experience and track record in delivering “double-digit sales growth for many of its clients”. Since joining the Robinson Young portfolio, Thornton & Ross-owned Covonia cough medicine has experienced year-on-year sales growth and is currently the number one brand in the convenience market (IRI). Robinson continues: “Our shared services model keeps costs down for manufacturers, and gives them a ready-made experienced sales team, whose established relationships with all key cash & carry buyers usually delivers better results than they achieve alone. “Coupling this with our expertise at developing trade marketing programmes,


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

managing categories and analysing market data to maximise opportunities, brand owners are able to take advantage of a simple and proven winning combination.” Earlier this month, Robinson Young replaced Proctor & Gamble as the exclusive sales, marketing and distribution partner for laundry additive brand ACE in the UK. The agreement comes less than 12 months after Robinson Young extended its health and beauty business by partnering with Lornamead to represent its hero brands, including Vosene, Wright’s, Bristows and Harmony. Despite the newest additions, Robinson Young reports that over 70% of its major partners have been working with the company for 10 years or more, a retention rate which Robinson (pictured below) attributes to the business “embracing latest trends and technology to improve efficiency”. Last year, Robinson Young invested in a new bespoke ERP (enterprise resource planning) system to co-ordinate all aspects of the business, from warehouse and stock control through to forecasting. More recently, it has introduced new data management and reporting systems, as well as a bespoke online ordering portal that offers its cash & carry customers a dual platform for purchasing. “By adding this extra dimension, it means that customers, particularly in the wholesale channel, are not restricted to the working day to place orders but can do so at their convenience, in the evenings or at weekends, if that suits them better,” concludes Robinson.

Robinson Young’s key brands

• Catering/Foodservice: Caterpack, Finesse, Scotchbrite, Solo. • Health & Beauty: Covonia, Settlers, Bodyform, Wilkinson Sword, Tena, Vosene, Harmony Litozin. Household: Zoflora, Safewrap, Scotchguard, ACE, • Bizzybee. • Stationery: Energizer, Velcro, Post-it, UHU, Varsity, Rhino, Uniball, Masterlock.


Your brands will flourish in our hands 40 years of success and expertise in Non Food Sales, Marketing, Logistics and Warehousing across all major channels and sectors. Now including coverage of Pharmacy channel

Robinson Young Ltd To find out how we can grow your business contact: Michael Robinson, Managing Director. 01284 766261 / m.robinson@ry.tm

THE NON FOOD SPECIALISTS Robinson Young Limited. Ibson House, Eastern Way, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. IP32 7AB. tel: 01284 766261 www.robinsonyoung.co.uk

sales/marketing & brokerage Portfolio extension SHS Sales & Marketing, which provides outsourced sales, business support and logistical solutions for brand owners across the UK, has expanded its value-added support services by strengthening its internal insight team and expertise in online retailing. The company, which represents a number of leading brands, including Johnson & Johnson, Twinings, Ricola and Reckitt Benckiser, has revamped its services to help brand owners capitalise on digital and data opportunities, while also enabling wholesalers to benefit from leading insight into consumer behaviour and trends. Marcus Freer, managing director of SHS Sales & Marketing, told Cash & Carry Management: “The company works hard to continue to evolve in a challenging environment and strives to be recognised as the supplier of choice for any brand owner seeking to maximise their visibility, presence and profits within the UK retail market. “We add value to the brand owner and the wholesaler by fully utilising our knowledge and insight to strengthen a brand owner’s strategic plans and a depot’s in-outlet execution.” Freer points to SHS Sales & Marketing’s commercial success, relationships and access to key industry stakeholders, and advises more businesses to take advantage of its “unrivalled channel expertise and in-depot insight”. He adds: “SHS Sales & Marketing offers extensive sales callage and excellent relationships with buyers across grocery multiples, wholesalers and cash & carries, forecourts, on-trade and foodservice outlets. “For any brand owner, finding a sales and marketing agency that they can trust to effectively and efficiently

A CLIENT’S PERSPECTIVE “Johnson & Johnson has been working with SHS Sales & Marketing for some time and, based on the delivery of very strong commercial results, we have expanded the number of brands within its remit. SHS Sales & Marketing has provided fantastic insight and has played a crucial role in driving brand awareness, visibility and sales within the wholesale channel.” Alex Keevil, senior customer development manager at Johnson & Johnson.


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

‘The addition of the Vileda brand further cements our position as leaders within the household sector’ – Marcus Freer, managing director, SHS Sales & Marketing.

manage their route-to-market strategy is a crucial decision. “However, the calibre and portfolio of the brands that have trusted SHS Sales & Marketing with their own development demonstrates the expertise and capability that the team can offer.” Freer reports that SHS Sales & Marketing has grown the Johnson & Johnson portfolio of brands by over 20% in the last 12 months “by developing a strategic retail contact plan encompassing car sales, telesales, in-depot promotions and local marketing”. As a result, Johnson & Johnson has extended its partnership with the Gloucester-based company by outsourcing work for its nutrition brand Splenda. Elsewhere, SHS Sales & Marketing has expanded its portfolio by securing the distribution, sales and marketing contract for German cleaning and household brand Vileda. With over 65 years’ experience in the household market, Vileda is the leading supplier for several cleaning products and the agreement comes less than a year after SHS Sales & Marketing secured sole distribution rights for Twinings within the UK convenience channel. Freer concludes: ‘’We have worked hard to continually evolve our offering for brand owners, demonstrating real commercial benefit in an ever changing and challenging retail environment. “The addition of the Vileda brand further cements our position as leaders within the household sector and ensures that we can continue to add value for consumers, shoppers, retailers and brand owners.”

For further information: Robinson Young Ltd (01284) 766261 SHS Sales & Marketing (01452) 378500



SHS Sales & Marketing are the UK’s leading sales and marketing company. For 30 years, some of the UK’s biggest brands have appointed us to provide an outsourced solution to help increase their market share, drive revenues and maximise business efficiencies by providing sales, logistics, customer services, finance and customer marketing. Using our category specialist knowledge and insights, coupled with our expertise and breadth of sales coverage across all trading channels, we have the right skills to put your brand in the spotlight.

T: 01452 378 500 E: info@shs-sales.co.uk Find out how we can support your brand at www.shs-sales.co.uk

buying groups

A point of difference: equality is the best policy Name: Confex Founded: 1972 Website: www.confex.ltd.uk Contact number: (01608) 652333

‘We are independently owned and we work as much for our members as we do for our suppliers’ – Tom Gittins (pictured right), business development manager at Confex.

Confex at a glance: Wholesale members: approximately 300. Combined turnover of group members: £1.87 billion. Own-brand lines: over 1,500. 92% of members are delivered wholesalers. Half-year figures show 14.2% growth across all 213 suppliers (January to June 2014).

• • • • •

Interview conducted with Tom Gittins

How has Confex worked with its members to grow sales? Since moving offices in September, we have taken on three new employees and we have acquired 18 new members this year. We have extended our Central Distribution service and our members can now remain competitive, without prohibitive order requirements, by purchasing mixed pallets from 30 suppliers. We have also changed our promotional brochure by incorporating a pound-saver area – specifically for price-marked and promotional offers. We are always looking to offer bespoke member services and we recently launched a tobacco room e-newsletter to help our members and their customers prepare for the display ban next year. What is your unique selling point? We are independently owned and we work as much for our members as we do for our suppliers. We have a tradition of not operating a membership fee, an obstacle that might prevent a smaller wholesaler from joining. All our members are given the best tools to compete both locally and nationally. As long as they meet our criteria and are dealing with six of our suppliers, they can become a Confex member. What are your plans for the next 12 months? Our ESavers programme, which encompasses all price list and order form requirements, has been a massive success since being launched last year, with our members benefiting from the facility to produce their own branded product sales brochure. Our new digital asset manager will now be leading the integration of the service across 40% of our membership by Spring 2015. We are also helping our members embrace


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

Confex prints over 200,000 ESavers brochures every month

new technology by implementing the second stage of our social media strategy. We have now assigned a dedicated social media consultant to our members and we are currently rolling out a social media starter pack to offer expert advice and facilitate communication and relationship building across all platforms. What advice would you give to wholesalers looking to expand and increase turnover? Implement online ordering systems and offer late night deliveries for added flexibility. Diversify into the non-food sector and offer a one-stop shop for customers. Provide a value-added service by educating customers about latest regulations and responding to market trends.

• • •

Why should wholesalers invest in Confex? We experienced 11.3% growth last year, and over the last 12 months our group turnover has risen by £500 million. We are undoubtedly the group with the most delivered wholesalers so we are constantly working with our suppliers to ensure our members receive enough margin and the best deals. All our operations are now digitalised and we are in a strong position to continue our development and growth in the future.

A MEMBER’S PERSPECTIVE “Since joining Confex, we have been able to deal with larger suppliers and access better pricing. Central Distribution has also been a great help and gives us added flexibility and the opportunity to trial new products without implicating our cash flow. My overall margins have increased and it is now a lot easier to compete with the purchasing power of larger wholesalers.” Nick Walden, sales director of Ashton Farms


Confex, the UK’s most diverse independent wholesale trading group ✔ £1.7bn Member Turnover ✔ Over 200 Official Suppliers ✔ Wide range of product categories ✔ Preferential Trading Terms ✔ Central Distribution facility ✔ ESavers bespoke brochure production ✔ Annual Trade Show ✔ Weekly Payments ✔ Developed Own Brand ✔ No Membership Fee ✔ No Joining Fee



Membership enquiries welcome enquiries@confex.ltd.uk Tel 01608 652333


buying groups

Catering for its members: a food supplier’s dream Name: Country Range Group Founded: 1992 Website: www.countryrange.co.uk Contact number: (0845) 209 3777

‘We do everything in our power to support our members, promote their independence and help share best practice’ – Coral Rose (pictured), managing director of Country Range.

Country Range at a glance: Wholesale members: 16 operating out of 25 depots throughout the UK and Channel Islands. Combined turnover of group members: £360 million with 26% year-on-year growth. Own-brand lines: 798 with 12 more set to be released in the second half of 2014.

requirements, as well as trade regulations. In the past 23 months, we have launched 70 new products and redesigned and expanded the brand’s front-of-house portion-control range. We are currently striving to meet Responsibility Deal salt targets and aim to take one billion calories, 13 tonnes of salt and 34 tonnes of saturated fat out of our spreads over the next year.

How has Country Range worked with its members to grow sales? What support services do you offer? Our members receive marketing support through our Stir It Up magazine, which they can offer to caterers to keep them up to date with product and industry news, plus business support features, ‘leading lights’ profiles and chef ideas. In 2011, we also developed an online resource called K2N (Key to Nutrients). Incorporating 6,000 SKUs, the tool enables caterers to create nutritionally balanced recipes and menus and compare them against food-based standards and GDAs. K2N also includes full allergen information, making it easy for caterers to meet the new Food Information Regulation that will require them to be transparent about the allergens in food sold in catering establishments from December.

Why should wholesalers invest in Country Range? As a group, we do everything in our power to support our members, promote their independence and help share best practice. Our members can also stock some of the biggest brand names with a national support programme behind them and can use this in pricing and promotional strategies to benefit caterers. On top of all this, they have access to the Country Range own brand, which is great quality and priced to provide value for caterers and enhanced margins for wholesalers.

• • •

Interview conducted with Coral Rose

Country Range ownlabel lines are growing by 30% year on year

What has been the highlight in 2014? Earlier this year, we organised a study trip to Chicago and took 15 member representatives to uncover food trends and new technologies used by wholesalers in the States. A couple of our members are currently extending their premises, and seeing what technologies are being used over there was invaluable, giving them ideas about what they could put in place in their own warehouses. What are the major challenges affecting Country Range and how are these being overcome? When it comes to health, members with education and care catering customers have more pressures than most and our own-brand range has to conform to their individual


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

OWN-BRAND EXTENSION To capitalise on the rising popularity of ‘posh’ fish finger sandwiches, Country Range has launched Gourmet Cod Fish Fingers (pictured above) for caterers. The 6cm-long fish fingers, which are packaged 2 x 1kg bags per box and priced at £12, can be deep fried in less than five minutes and just one 35g portion is suitable for a children’s main meal. Martin Ward, brand manager for Country Range, says: “Caterers are keen to tap into the resurgence in popularity of nostalgic classics, but eating out, consumers also want the ‘treat experience’. “The new gourmet fish finger is a high quality product without the price tag of brands that will have customers hooked.”


With the resource of a national group and the personal service of regional wholesalers, we have a winning combination which is serving an increasing number of caterers in all sectors of the industry.

Industry recognised as a professional foodservice brand designed for the independent caterer delivering consistent quality and performance at great value.


92% of

K2N is the superb secure online tool that helps you take control of nutrition as well as many other aspects of your food preparation and planning.

readers say Stir it up Promotions influences what they purchase

• Determine the nutritional content of the food you supply • K2N has over 6000 predefined ingredients



• Choose from over 300 set recipes • NEW K2N now includes full allergen information, making it easy for caterers to meet the new Food Information Regulations requiring them to be transparent about the allergens in food sold in catering establishments from December.





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Stir it up

• Vision

of readers say what they read in Stir it up influences their menu or another aspect of their business




14 14:41


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August 2014.ind

• Scale

Stir it up is now keeping caterers up to date instantly via the new Twitter account. Follow us @StiritupMag

• Independence

Foodservice Inspiration

buying groups

The bigger, the better: a network of opportunity Name: Today’s Group Founded: 1987 Website: www.todays.co.uk Contact number: (0844) 247 0700

‘We have a three-year strategy focused on delivering a holistic approach to every component of our business’ – Bill Laird (pictured right), managing director of Today’s Group.

Today’s Group at a glance: Wholesale members: 162 operating out of 184 depots. Combined turnover of group members: £5.7 billion. Own label: 115 lines.

• • •

Interview conducted with Bill Laird

How has Today’s Group worked with its members to grow sales? What support services do you offer? The group spends an awful lot of time and effort to make sure our members receive competitive and customised deals so they can pass on savings to their customers. We audit for a large number of independent stores every promotional period so we receive regular feedback from retailers on the strength and success of our promotions. We have an extensive programme of retailer development for our symbol group and about 1,800 independent stores currently take advantage of promotional packages, point-of-sale material and marketing posters through our Retail Club. What sets Today’s Group apart from other buying groups? We have an ongoing communication process with suppliers and members to address latest trends and changes inside the business. We host a forum discussion each year and we also announce new initiatives at our annual conference. We are now the most technologically advanced buying group and we have made a significant investment in our IT systems. All our promotions and member terms are electronic and we have taken about a million pieces of paper out of circulation in the last two months. We have also developed new applications for our members and we were the first to the market with an events app which was launched at our conference in April. Why should suppliers want to do business with Today’s Group? Although we are aiming to expand our Today’s fascia to 500 stores, we are not interested in the numbers game; we are more concerned with quality across our


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

Over 750,000 wholesaler and retailer leaflets are distributed every three weeks

membership. We know our suppliers share our ethos and are interested in supporting sustainable stores which conform to their merchandising standards consistently, rather than to an ad-hoc standard. We provide planograms, window graphics and digital support to help meet every requirement and we also have a retail team dedicated to offering store layout advice and range positioning guidance. What advice would you give to wholesalers looking to expand and increase turnover? Build customer loyalty by supporting own-label products and providing unique and dedicated levels of service. Keep aware of your competition but focus on making 5/10% incremental improvements in your own business. Delivered wholesalers should utilise online technology for retailer convenience and offer a telesales support service.

• • •

What are the plans for the next 12 months? We have a three-year strategy focused on delivering a holistic approach to every component of our business and evolving our support services to help our specialist wholesalers maintain their momentum and grow their business. Demand for our own-label range also continues to grow and we are now concentrating on developing key products and adding range extensions with the best price points. If we can increase our own-brand portfolio to 300 lines in the medium term, we think that will more than suffice because we don’t want to overwhelm our wholesalers. We introduced about 50 lines last year and we have got some new products planned between now and Christmas. We are also aiming to recruit new members. There is a fee to join but that is reflected in the size and dimension of the business. Today’s Group has the largest membership of any group in the country and we have already recruited 11 members this year. We will be making a major announcement later this month on a big member joining us.



With the help of the

Today’s Group we’ve been

a very successful business for over 25 years.

When we looked at buying groups we found Today’s were the best in the marketplace.

They’ve helped us by negotiating better prices and with regular promotional activity.

They also keep us informed of industry changes so we stay ahead of the game and I really value their personal touch and straightforward approach. I’d advise joining Today’s because I know they give the best possible package.

Kali Mulchandani Director, Imperial Cash & Carry

To be part of our future growth call 0844 247 0700. facebook.com/todaysgroup 


buying groups

Working together to meet objectives Name: Caterforce Founded: 1994 Website: www.caterforce.co.uk Contact number: (01625) 440188

‘The retail market has been streets ahead for a number of years and it is now time for foodservice to catch up’ – Nick Redford (pictured), managing director of Caterforce.

Caterforce at a glance: Wholesale members: eight operating out of 18 depots. Combined turnover of group members: £345 million in 2013. Forecast to rise to £420 million at the end of 2014. Own label: over 300 lines.

• • •

Interview conducted with Nick Redford

How has Caterforce worked with its members to grow sales? What support services do you offer? We strongly advocate engaged buying support and organise weekly buying telephone conferences to discuss commodity pricing. We also arrange monthly meetings to clear critical paths on own-brand and ensure our members are fully engaged in the procurement process right from the start. Half of our central resource is dedicated to producing firstclass digital and multi-channel marketing services such as price lists, monthly promotional leaflets and direct mail campaigns. Having this centrally-shared resource not only saves costs, but also helps execute a clear and coherent message across the group. Our marketing colleagues also meet quarterly to discuss new ideas and share best practice from local initiatives. How has Caterforce invested in the group to harness growth? Growth and development of our own-label ranges has been a major priority in the last 18 months. In late 2013, we launched Chefs’ Selections, which has been a phenomenal success. The brand is now worth over £22 million at sales value and our decision not to load own-brand with huge central rebates has clearly paid dividends in our sales figures, with members benefiting from receiving net pricing.

don’t want to support our membership with generic solutions or act as an expensive administrative centre. In April 2014, we welcomed Kent Frozen Foods to the group and we now boast a combined annual turnover approaching £400 million. We are actively seeking to expand our membership to small to medium-sized profit sector businesses, with a growing presence within the cost sector. What are the plans for the next 12 months? The need for innovation and differentiation remains high on a customer’s agenda and it is important that wholesalers operate as one-stop shops and offer ‘full baskets’ across several categories. Therefore, it is key that ranges are developed significantly and latest market trends such as informal dining are catered for. Legislation involving nutritional information requirements will soon become a reality and our members must be prepared to support every customer’s needs. Caterforce will continue to work with its membership to ensure solutions are in place to help drive the group and its supplier base forward into 2015 and beyond. What advice would you give to wholesalers looking to expand and increase turnover? To progress, there needs to be a willingness to embrace change and explore all routes to market. It is imperative that technology is fully maximised to improve efficiencies and also utilised as a channel to the end user. Going forward, online ordering will no longer be an optional extra but an expectation. As far as e-commerce is concerned, the retail market has been streets ahead for a number of years and it is now time for foodservice to catch up.

Are you actively seeking to recruit new members? Caterforce has eight regional wholesalers and the constitution of the group demands synergy between its members. High customer, supplier, range and cultural overlaps are the main attributes when considering new members because we


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014


Chefs’ Selections by Caterforce In just under two years the brand has taken off and is a true success story with brand sales now in excess of £20m and growing, we have built a range on the firm foundations of member co-operation and commitment. Our capability to drive sales coherently through our wholesaler members nationwide is what really sets us aside and means this range is growing at a phenomenal rate and already a firm favourite with caterers. Making the right business partnerships and building lasting supplier relationships is at our core. Contact a member of the Caterforce Buying Team if you would like to become a supplier on 01625 440188.



buying groups

A technical hub of innovation: an ethos built on service value Name: Sugro Founded: 1984 Website: www.sugro.co.uk Contact number: (01270) 628728

‘We visit stores frequently to review their services, identify opportunity gaps and ensure full-value distribution’ – Philip Jenkins, managing director of Sugro and Acorn.

Sugro at a glance: Wholesale members: 51 operating out of 60 depots. Combined turnover of group members: £870 million. Official suppliers: 193.

• • •

How has Sugro worked with its members to grow sales? What support services do you offer? Two years ago, we introduced a business development department to keep involved in the front-of-house activities with our members. We have 250 representatives operating on the road and we visit stores frequently to review their services, identify opportunity gaps and ensure full-value distribution. We provide a range of display equipment free of charge and merchandising plans which independent retailers can order, and we also run regular sales training courses and assist in telesales development to help our members grow new accounts and turnover. What is Sugro’s unique selling point? The uniqueness of Sugro is based around its commercial involvement in all aspects of its wholesale membership. We

Interview conducted with Philip Jenkins

A MEMBER’S PERSPECTIVE “Sugro provides a very hands-on and efficient service and has built a very good rapport with the big manufacturers which is extremely beneficial. It is also excellent at processing payments quickly and it is very proactive in responding to market changes. It provides us with three weekly promotional brochures which are of a tremendous standard and would probably take us ages to create internally. It is all very positive and since joining in 2002, Sugro has always been flexible in adapting to our needs.” Martin Weekes, managing director of Weekes Bros Ltd


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

are recognised as the best in the market for our promotional structures and we aim to maximise the potential of all our initiatives, ranging from our Retail Club to electronic technical services based around our EClub and fascias. It is remarkably easy to put a promotion together and then waive the responsibility and let somebody try and implement it. We invest within our business development to become part of the chain right the way through to the independent retailer. It is not only a value-added system, but also a consolidated approach to wholesale and retail. Why should suppliers invest in Sugro? The compliance structure that operates across all of our membership is very high indeed and suppliers have confidence that they can distribute across 16,000 retailers. This is not a negotiable fantasy and Sugro delivers what it promises. Are you actively seeking to recruit new members? We are constantly recruiting new members. Since the beginning of the year, we have recruited into double figures and our newest member [Becsco] joined in the middle of August. But unlike other buying groups, Sugro’s philosophy is not built on developing a centralised commercial proposition for itself. The group’s remit is to develop member turnover and wholesalers must pass a rigorous process before being accepted into our membership. What are the plans for the next 12 months? We are currently focused on developing our technical hub which provides a centralised product library function and coding. We already provide EClub deals, which is a marketing and advertising resource where independent retailers can place orders via interactive emails. But by the end of 2015, we want all of our members to be able to take advantage of existing services, such as full-value order systems and marketing personalisation, alongside a new online trading service, including click and collect.


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Sugro UK Whitewell House 69 Crewe Road Nantwich Cheshire CW5 6HX. Telephone: 01270 628728 Fax: 01270 623069 For more information visit our website: www.sugro.co.uk

buying groups

Helping smaller wholesalers graduate into the big time Name: Acorn Buying & Marketing Group Website: www.acornbuying.co.uk Contact number: (01270) 613341

‘We not only provide smaller wholesalers with access to national account managers at major manufacturers, but we also offer commercial platforms to help develop and grow their businesses’ – Ian Irvine, head of retail and business development for Sugro and Acorn.

Acorn at a glance: Founded 2010. Wholesale members: 24 operating out of 24 depots. Combined turnover of group members: £126 million. Over 6,000 grocery, chilled and frozen SKUs.

• • • •

Interview conducted with Philip Jenkins

How has Acorn worked with its members to grow sales? What support services do you offer? Acorn was originally formed to provide smaller wholesalers with access to promotional and overrider structures and to allow them to compete with their larger competitors. We operate a central distribution function which acts as a supportive network to allow our members to purchase smaller pallets and introduce new product ranges. We aim to assist and coordinate the account development with manufacturers, in turn helping to increase the volume for members to open a direct account status with suppliers. What sets Acorn apart from other buying groups? Acorn does not penalise the aspirations and strategic development of small businesses. The group is underpinned by the strength of Sugro, and members are provided with the tools and resources to grow their business far quicker than any other buying group. Many smaller wholesalers only have a very limited direct account status with manufacturers so we remove any restrictions and barriers to entry. There are no joining fees, hidden costs or deductions and we have not charged a membership fee for the last two years. Are you actively seeking to recruit new members? We are always looking to recruit members and we have the facility to expand our existing departmental and operational structure to accommodate a larger membership. We want to provide an open platform that enables smaller wholesalers to take full advantage of promotional and overrider platforms and become a Sugro member in the future. We have built a reputation for catering for small to medium-sized wholesalers


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

and we have already had a couple of Acorn members graduate into Sugro. What are the plans for the next 12 months? In 2015, we will have a digital platform for online trading across the whole of our membership and we will continue to work closely on a front-of-house basis with our sales force and wholesalers. We believe there is tremendous growth potential for our members to take advantage of the commercial and marketing opportunities which we offer and our competitors do not. What advice would you give to wholesalers looking to expand and increase turnover? It is vitally important our members analysis their partnerships with existing customers and identify areas of improvement. We often find that the ratio of main order against deal selling is unbalanced and wholesalers should develop strategies to help sell a greater amount of products. This is the fastest route to increase profitability and they should also start to utilise cross-sectional order systems to coincide with technological advancements and the demand for convenience.

A MEMBER’S PERSPECTIVE “The major benefit Acorn provides is a greater access to major suppliers. We have opened several new accounts and we are currently discussing plans to join Sugro in the future. Whenever we contact Acorn, it is always willing to offer support and explain how the system works. I would definitely recommend the group to other smaller wholesalers and I would rate its services 10 out of 10.” Ekber Aslan, managing director of Rainbow Cash & Carry UK


Calling all Wholesalers... ...is your business ready to GROW The benefits of joining this NEW exciting Group:

Underpinned by the strength, experience and achievements of Sugro UK. Industry best promotional activity designed to grow your business. Provide your customers with the full benefits of drop shipment.

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It’s the most exciting development in wholesale in recent years! Simply go to the Acorn Buying & Marketing Group website www.acornbuying.co.uk and fill in the application page; you will then be contacted to progress your application. Alternatively, you could e-mail registration@acornbuying.co.uk or simply pick up the telephone and dial 01270 613 341.

Acorn Buying & Marketing Group

Join the winners at Acorn

buying groups

A blueprint for success: service quality over membership quantity Name: Landmark Wholesale Founded: 1972 Website: www.landmarkwholesale.co.uk Contact number: (01908) 255300

Martin Williams, managing director of Landmark

‘Compared with the other buying groups, Landmark’s support network is one of the best in the industry’ – Dee Thaya, director of Abra Wholesale.

Landmark at a glance: Wholesale members: 37 operating out of 109 depots. Combined turnover of group members: Just under £3bn. Own-brand lines: 850 approximately.

• • •

Lifestyle Express, we are in the middle of a three-year business plan focused on core range compliance. We set some really challenging targets but all our audits are showing that we are increasing compliance, and more retailers are now stocking more of our core range which is very pleasing.

How has Landmark worked with its members to grow sales? What support services do you offer? Our trading terms package underpins our relationship with our members and includes overriders, pricing and promotions. We provide them with many other services, such as a customised IT service, which allows overnight transactions of sales data. We also have a business development programme that is consistently bringing new ideas to our customers. One of these is a cashback promotion through our Lifestyle Express stores, which gives retailers over £1,000 worth of vouchers each year in return for stocking core range best-sellers.

Interview conducted with Martin Williams

How has Landmark invested to harness growth? We are actively seeking to grow our share of the market through our trading and business development agenda. We have recently created three new positions, all developmentrelated, to work on these areas of our business. These include data and insight, foodservice and on-trade. Are you actively seeking new members? Over the years, our average number of members has been 32 or 33 and at the moment we have 37. We had four new members join us in January this year – Abra Wholesale, Sutaka, RD Johns Foodservice and Caterway. Abra, in particular, has been flying since joining us and has almost doubled the range in-depot by using our contacts, knowledge and experience. What are the plans for the future? We are currently developing our Lifestyle Express, foodservice business and on-trade division. With regard to


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014


seasonal products

Don’t miss a trick! Planning ahead means that your customers stand a better chance of stocking bestselling seasonal ranges and fully capitalising on festive PoS material. Halloween spending grew by 8% last year, equating to over £315m in the UK (Planet Retail), with cakes accounting for £30m. New from United Biscuits for Halloween, McVitie’s Jaffa Cake Bars are available in Spooky Orange and Lemon & Slime variants at a promotional price of £1. The McVitie’s Cake Company has revamped the pack design for its bonfire cake range, which now features an on-pack flash stating ‘Bonfire Bakes’ to highlight the product’s seasonality. Premier Foods, the number one Halloween ambient packaged cakes supplier (IRI), launched Mr Kipling Choc & Slime Slices, which come in a twin-wrapped pack. Also new for Halloween, individually wrapped Cadbury Shock Orange Mini Rolls feature ‘trick or treat’ themed packaging. Mr Kipling Fiendish Fancies and Toffee Terror Whirls make a return, along with Cadbury Blackcurrant Bite Mini Rolls and Cinder Toffee Cake Bars (the number two and three bestselling products for Halloween 2013 respectively). Cadbury is the second biggest cake brand at Halloween. Sales of Halloween-themed biscuits exceeded £1.5m last year, with Burton’s Biscuit Company accounting for 44% of all sales. Four Cadbury biscuit products available only for the Halloween period include the Trick or Treat biscuit assortment, Cadbury Mini Animals, Cadbury Halloween Mini Fingers, and Vampire Bites. Burton’s Christmas line-up includes the Cadbury jumper tin, Cadbury Occasions carton and the Cadbury Selection carton. As the nation’s favourite biscuit stocking filler line last year, Festive Friends is back, containing new biscuit characters and shapes. A secondary novelty line has been added to the range, called Cadbury Santa’s Arctic Friends. All data: Nielsen unless otherwise stated.

Seasonal sweet appeal Halloween confectionery is worth £35m. Treat-size products have the biggest share, valued at £27m. Mondelez International has relaunched its treat-size range with new designs aligned for on-shelf consistency and the same dimensions for all outers and bags. The Cadbury treat-size portfolio is available in core


favourites and growing brands, with the single-eat range featuring Cadbury Dairy Milk Buttons, Cadbury Crunchie and Cadbury Twirl. And for the first time, variety packs will have Cadbury Heroes branding, bringing together top brands under one name. Cadbury Heroes is worth £48m and growing at 7%. Cadbury Screme Egg and Cadbury Crunchy Spider are the number one and two skus respectively, making up a 53% value share of Halloween selfeats. The new Halloween range includes fruit flavour jelly and foam sweets in four Discovery Patch variants: Animals, Body Bits, Myths & Monsters, and a multipack of treatsize Mini Creatures. Under the Maynards name are new Spooky Treats and Sour Tricks – themed jellies in a 145g pack. Christmas accounts for 39% of confectionery sales and Ferrero has three multi-media campaigns planned for its Ferrero Rocher, Ferrero Collection and Raffaello brands. Ferrero Rocher is launching a seasonal campaign with the tagline ‘Make your moments golden’. Ferrero Collection will also have its own press and TV advertising. Raffaello has its first stand-alone campaign that positions the brand as an everyday premium treat. Ferrero Rocher Star Tree Decoration and Raffaello Star Tree Decoration join this year’s Christmas line-up. Kinder Mini Mix 79g now includes Kinder Surprise, Kinder Chocolate Medium Bar, Kinder Chocolate with Cereal and a Kinder Mini Figure. New Kinder Figures 15g have been launched in three-pack and six-pack formats. Traditionally eaten at Halloween, Walkers Nonsuch toffees are made with whole milk, butter and real black treacle, and are available in 150g sharing bags, 2.5kg bulk bags and traditional sweet-shop jars for pick ’n’ mix. The 150g bags are presented in shelf-ready boxes of 12 and retail from 99p per bag. This year Mars Chocolate is providing retailers with ‘Have a Funsize Halloween’ PoS material in the form of dump-bins and free-standing display units. Last year, the value share of the Mars Funsize range increased by 6.4% during Halloween. New for Halloween, Green and Orange M&M’s colour mixes are available as sharing pouches and treat bags. New Christmas products from the company include the Maltesers Giant Cracker, the Merryteaser Reindeer

Cash & Carry Management

• September 2014 • 47

seasonal products Advent Calendar, and Milky Way Magic Stars tube. Merryteaser Reindeer was the number one selling self-eat impulse product last year (Retail Newsagent) and this year the popular line carries the Product of the Year 2014 logo on its packaging. Galaxy Gift For You white is available exclusively over the festive period and is the only white chocolate self-treat on the market. Last year’s Maltesersled Fun Size selection box was number three within the selection pack category. The M&M’s-themed selection box once again bears the Red and Yellow characters embracing the cold weather. All data: Nielsen unless otherwise stated.

Snacking options Christmas is a key sales period for KP Snacks. KP Big Bag Nuts is a new range of larger, shareable bags in four variants: Salted, Dry Roasted, Salt & Vinegar and Spicy Chilli. KP Nuts Caddies are back in bestselling Jumbo Salted, Dry Roasted and Honey Roast styles and are worth £200,000 in incremental sales at Christmas. The company has launched KP Coated Nuts – crispy coated peanuts in Sour Cream & Onion flavour, as well as the biggest-selling flavour in coated nuts, Sweet Chilli. KP Frosted Nuts experienced an 88% sales uplift last year. Cheese Footballs are an exclusive Christmas product and this year the snack is joined by a new variant, Cheese & Tomato Christmas Crackers. The company’s Snackers tubs delivered over £3.2m in retail sales value during Christmas 2013 and this year the brand has launched two stand-alone skus: Penn State Sour Cream & Chive Christmas Tree Pretzels and limited-edition Phileas Fogg Fire Roasted Chilli Taco Rolls. The cheeseboard is a key opportunity for caterers at Christmas and Bel Foodservice advises cash & carries to stock a wide range of local and international cheeses as consumers have become more adventurous and knowledgeable about cheese. Premium cheese options from Bel include Boursin, Port Salut and Leerdammer (the latter two options are also available as a wheel of cheese). All data: Nielsen.

Festive food selections “While there will always be a place for a traditional Christmas turkey on festive menus, the rising price of red meat and the demand for healthier eating has contributed to the current trend for ‘flexitarianism’, whereby people choose to eat as


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

vegetarians for certain days of the week,“ says Susan Gregory, head of food at Nestlé Professional. “To meet demand from operators keen to incorporate this trend into their menus during the Christmas period, cash & carries should offer a variety of roast options that appeal to diners seeking a meat alternative. For example, our Maggi Original Vegetarian Gravy Mix delivers a rich, flavoursome gravy that is consistent in quality and taste, adding a satisfying touch to festive vegetarian meals. “For cash & carries serving customers looking for a particularly indulgent alternative to a turkey roast, Chef Fumet de Homard (Lobster Fumet) is part of Chef’s premium range of paste fonds and fumets and adds a luxurious touch to fish and seafood dishes,” she adds. Riverside Food Services has a range of party snack foods that includes Chicken Pops, which are bite-sized balls of 100% chicken breast coated in breadcrumb, southern fried, or hot ‘n’ spicy or pizza coating, and are ready to eat in two minutes from frozen. Riverside also offers whole muscle Chicken Goujons, Chicken Chunks and BBQ Wingettes and Drumettes. All Riverside products are produced and prepared in a facility purpose-built for Halal slaughter and processing, ensuring the company’s products comply with authentic Halal certification requirements from animal welfare to slaughter. Riverside’s products have been specially developed for quick preparation for busy caterers and fast-food outlets, with a four-way cook option from frozen in minutes. Grace Keenan, brand manager for Kerrymaid, says: “Dairy is an essential ingredient in many dishes and for wholesalers to capitalise during the festive period it’s important to offer ingredients that consistently deliver on quality and flavour.” Kerrymaid Double has the taste of fresh cream but with added functionality and versatility. It is ideal for both hot and cold applications like broccoli & Stilton soup and Christmas trifle. Bainmarie and microwave-stable in sauces, it never splits when heated or used with acidic and alcoholic ingredients, like brandy sauce. It can also be whipped to three times its volume and its creamy dairy taste makes it suitable for pouring too. For set menus or pre-booked meals, chefs can prepare in advance by bulk ordering Kerrymaid Double, which is stored at ambient temperature and has a nine-month shelf life. Once opened, Kerrymaid Double will last for up to three days. Kerrymaid’s portfolio includes cream alternatives, spreads, slices and grated cheese, custard, and ice cream. Kerrymaid Custard can be served straight from the pack and is stored at ambient temperature with a 12-month shelf life. Classic Cuisine’s festive range incorporates traditional favourites as well as seafood, vegetarian and free-from options.


seasonal products Mark Dean, sales director, comments: “This year Classic Cuisine has included various new dishes and some of the old festive favourites. The Turkey Tornedo, for example, was one of our bestsellers in a number of pub and restaurant chains last year so we had to put that back on the menu this year. “We had an increased interest in our vegetarian dishes, so we’ve spent more time on our vegetarian range. The demand for our meat-free options has risen from all our clients, including branded national pub chains, hotel chains, in-store dining and high street restaurants.” Galloway Lodge Preserves offers festive accompaniments such as Mulled Cranberry Chutney, Cranberry & Port Jelly, Chilli Jam and Redcurrant Jelly. For the festive season, Galloway Lodge also sells 100g jars of some of its most popular products. These include Raspberry Jam, Heather Honey Marmalade, Bramley Apple Chutney and its trademark chutney called Poacher’s Pickle, all of which are suitable as stocking fillers or as gift-wrapped packs of three.

Premium wine & spirits Pernod Ricard is targeting a multi-million-pound round of “missed sales” in premium wines and spirits this Christmas, as it urges retailers to reap the rewards of helping their customers to trade up. The company advises retailers to follow two simple fivestep guides to boost their sales of premium wine and spirits during the forthcoming festivities. Premium spirits account for £1 in every £5 spent on spirits in the off-trade, but this figure rises to £1 in every £4 during the festive period, and to £1 in every £3 in the last week of Christmas. The premium spirits category has grown from having a 16.4% share at Christmas 2009 to 18.3% at Christmas 2013. Yet despite this £8m growth in impulse, it still represents a significant under-trade compared with the multiple grocers, where premium offerings claimed a 30% share of spirits sales during Christmas 2013, a rise of £95m since 2009. Pernod Ricard’s rules for success in spirits: 1. Ensure there is a premium option across all spirits. 2. Make Christmas special because 20% of non-shoppers say they would buy spirits in impulse if events were made more of (him!). Drive that sense of occasion at fixture with seasonal PoS. 3. Behind the counter makes browsing difficult in impulse. Shoppers say “pricing is hard to read and offers are unclear” (Canadean). Make the range and offers visible. 4. Drive visibility through enhanced premium ranging and full availability during Christmas. 5. Drive gifting in spirits and focus on gift packs. Impulse is the star performer for premium wines at


• Cash & Carry Management • September 2014

Christmas, outperforming multiple grocery in terms of rate of sale by two to one, with impulse sales of premium wine in the £6.50+ price band accounting for £1 in every £2, compared with £1 in every £3 throughout the rest of the year. That share is set to increase, with premium wines growing by 16%/£32m in impulse during Christmas 2013 compared with the previous year, while wines priced at £5 and under suffered a 7% fall, worth £23.5 million. Pernod Ricard’s rules for success in wine: 1. Ensure maximum representation and visibility in store. 2. Make Christmas special because lack of festive feel in-store means shoppers are less inclined to browse for “inspirational” purchases (PRUK). 3. Merchandise by price point with brand blocking where possible, and run deals across all price brands. 4. Focus on fizz. Sparkling wines grew by 11% last year. 5. Drive gifting in wine and focus on the most popular brands and gift packs. All data: Nielsen unless otherwise stated.

Treats for pets Mars Petcare has unveiled two new products for Christmas. The Pedigree Cracker contains a variety of dog treats, and for cats, Dreamies Super-Mix is a collection of Dreamies flavours. The limited-edition design for Dreamies Turkey is back, along with the Pedigree limited-edition range with seasonal designs for Christmas and the Pedigree Christmas Stocking. Pedigree Jumbone and Pedigree Schmackos are both available in a turkey variety. The Whiskas Christmas Stocking includes an interactive treat ball and treats and is available in pre-filled clip-strips and shelf-ready cases to optimise in-store presence.

For further information: Bel Foodservice (0333) 900 2020 Burton’s Biscuit Company (01727) 899700 Classic Cuisine (01604) 644884 Ferrero (01923) 690300 Galloway Lodge Preserves (01557) 814001 Kerrymaid (0800) 783 4321 KP Snacks (0845) 601 7583 Mars Chocolate (01844) 262517 Mars Petcare (01664) 411111 Mondelez International (08702) 400861 Nestlé Professional (0800) 745845 Pernod Ricard 020-8538 4484 Premier Foods (0800) 032 7111 Riverside Foods (01691) 839288 United Biscuits 020-234 5000 Walkers Nonsuch (01752) 752095


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