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DECember 2011

Telephone Sales Scratch Card Order Line 1800 22 66 88 Simply dial 1800 22 66 88 between 9.15am and 5.30pm and our Telephone Sales Team will process your order. All orders received by 4.30pm will be delivered on the next working day. We also have an “out of hours voicemail”. Call 1800 22 66 88 outside our working hours, leave your Business Name, Agent Number and Scratch Card order and this will be processed during our next working day.|December 2011|Contents|3

Contents Facing the Future SO Budget 2012 has come and gone, leaving the domestic retail trade somewhat shell-shocked. Not only has the VAT rate increased and tax been hiked on tobacco products, as expected, but the Government has done something of an about-turn on the issue of Upward Only Rent Reviews. We gauge reaction from Ireland’s retail groups to what has been described as a budget geared towards exports and not the domestic market (Page 4 & 5). Elsewhere, Retail News Editor, John Walshe talks to Frank Gleeson, Chairman of Retail Ireland and Retail Director of Topaz, about the big issues facing retailers as we enter into 2012. In a wideranging interview, Gleeson discusses the demise of the JLC system, the question of rents, Local Authority rates, smuggling and retailer-supplier relations in Ireland (Page 20-23). In our annual end-of-year round-up, we look back over the stories that made the headlines in 2011 across the grocery sector, from the High Court’s deeming of the JLC system as unconstitutional to Musgrave Group’s acquisition of Superquinn (Page 24), while we also pick our favourite new products from the year (Page 32). Finally, as the festive season approaches fast and we’re about to head into another year, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all our readers and advertisers for their continued support. Wishing you all a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year.



Budget Bombshells Shock Retailers.

SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards

16 SuperValu Balbriggan was named Off Licence of the Year at the Edward Dillon SuperValu Off Licence of the Year 2011/2012 Awards.

Centra Full Roast Coffee

18 Centra has signed

a €2m deal with Bewley’s to supply its new full roast coffee bean, which will be freshly ground for the ‘on the go’ coffee range, sold throughout its 463 stores nationwide.

4 6




Planning Guidelines Under Threat; Retail Implications for Proposed Fast Food Ban.

Products of the Year

44 Jean Smullen looks

SuperValu Irish Food Producers Awards 2011; Galway Seafood Companies Set to Grow Sales by €2m.

20 Retail News Interview

back over 2011 in the Irish wine trade, and highlights some of the best value wines across various price points.

Shelf Life

46 All the latest news and gossip from the trade.

20 As Chairman of Retail Ireland and Retail Director of Topaz, Frank Gleeson is at the coal-face of the big issues facing retailers: the high cost of trading, the growing problem of smuggling and how to get consumers spending again.

forecourt store in Trim, Co. Meath, has undergone an extensive revamp which sees the popular store more than double in size.

T A R A Managing Director: Fergus Farrell

Published by: Tara Publishing Co. Ltd.,

Editorial & Marketing Director: Kathleen Belton

Poolbeg House, 1/2 Poolbeg Street, Dublin 2.

Editor: John Walshe

Tel: (01) 2413095 Fax: (01) 2413010

Advertising: Kathleen Belton

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Pat Murray

Subscription to Retail News: e95 plus VAT Email:

Adrian Murphy

Origination by: Rooney Media Graphics

Chief News Reporter: Pavel Barter Wine Correspondent: Jean Smullen

Retailing: a look back over the biggest stories from the FMCG and retail sector across 2011.

On The Vine

14 Barry Gillen’s Londis

24 2011: The Year in

favourite new product launches from 2011.

Shop Profile

Kathleen Belton Editorial & Marketing Director

The Year in Review

32 Retail News selects its

IBEC Predict Employment Resurgence; Irish Grocery Code Could Prevail.

EUROSPAR Launches 2012 Charity Calendar; Flogas Wins Injunctions Against Trugas.


Printed by: W&G Baird

Reproduction without written permission is strictly prohibited.

46 Regulars 10 Industry News 41 Drinks News Sectoral Reports 34 Breakfast Time 42 Value Added Services

4|Retail News|December 2011|


Budget Bom bshells

RETAILERS have responded in dismay to Minister for Finance Michael Noonan’s announcements for Budget 2012, Retail News can report. Retailer representatives believe export businesses were prioritised in the budget, while domestic retail was left without much hope. The budget included a rise of VAT to 23% and tax hikes on fuel and cigarettes. No excise duty has been placed on alcohol, although the VAT increase will apply. Minister Noonan also announced plans to address the issue of cheap alcohol in supermarkets. Vincent Jennings, CEO of the Convenience Stores & Newsagents Association (CSNA), told us the retail sector has been designated the role of tax collectors. “It seems the Minister has identified farming, tourism, and exportorientated industries as the areas that would bring Ireland back. Retailers are hugely disappointed that we were not considered able to give the economy a lift up as well.” Retail Ireland Director, Frank Gleeson agreed the Minister focused on export

growth, but sidelined the domestic market. “There’s nothing there to stimulate domestic demand, which is fundamentally the big issue,” he said. “Costs remain high in Ireland, without any sign of resolution. Rents, rates and labour costs are as high as they can be, with no real prospect of coming down.” Paul Kelly, Director at Food and Drink Industry Ireland (FDII), agreed: “It’s been a bit like the food and drink sector overall. Exports have been very

Vincent Jennings, CEO of the Convenience Stores & Newsagents Association.

positive in the food and drink sector. They are expected to reach €8.9 billion this year, but the domestic market is a lot more difficult. Consumer spending is down; consumer sentiment is down.” Perhaps the most shocking news for retailers was the Government’s unexpected decision to abandon reform of upward only rent reviews. David Fitzsimons, Chief Executive of Retail Excellence Ireland (REI), has been lobbying for change to the rent process for four years. A day after the budget, three REI members, including a grocery business that employed 50 people, closed shop, Fitzsimons told us. The Government’s decision to maintain upward only rents was particularly surprising, as a bill that would have transformed the tenant/retailer relationship was on the brink of being passed. Only a week before budget day, Enterprise Minister Richard Bruton TD announced the Bill would go ahead. Fitzsimons says he recently had a private meeting with Brian Hayes TD, Junior Minister at the Department of Finance, who was “adamant” the legislation would be published in early 2012. “There were aspects we were teed up for, but to hear the decision to stand down the possibility of upward only rent review was shocking,” says Jennings. “There’s nothing in its place. We’re at the mercy of landlords. The truth of the matter is many of the NAMA developments are in apartments and office blocks, which are only half full anyway. Nothing short of a complete derogation of rental law would allow profitability to return.” The rise of VAT to 23% was no surprise - this was set out in the EU/IMF memorandum but retail commentators do not believe it will have the desired effect of increasing revenue by €670m. RGDATA lobbied the Government to hold off the increase until January, 2012, and were relieved to learn the Minister had complied.

“A lot of retailers are relying on things to pick up over the next few weeks,” explained Tara Buckley, RGDATA Director General. “The last few weeks have been very difficult. Sales in the convenience sector have been down on last year. There has

David Fitzsimons, Chief Executive of Retail Excellence Ireland. been a lot of worry about the budget killing Christmas. We hope there will be a pick-up over the next few weeks. We have a lot of members relying on the Christmas trade to keep them afloat.” FDII’s Paul Kelly, on the other hand, hoped the VAT hike would be introduced on a staggered basis. How will retailers combat the VAT increase? “What will probably happen is most retailers will absorb the increase and make a 2% reduction in margin,” said Jim McCabe, Chairman of the National Off-Licence Association (NOffLA). “Things are difficult enough. The Government talk about job creation and stimulating business - this VAT increase comes at a time when it’s not needed. Will people buy less because of the perception everything is more expensive now? Even the Government isn’t sure of that.” Proposals to make employers pay four weeks of employee sick pay were abandoned until next year, although the reduction in redundancy rebate is likely to|December 2011|Retail News|5


Shock Retailers hit employers hard. At present, employers can claim back 60% of redundancy payments. In January, the rate will be cut to 15%. “Making someone redundant will cost me 112.5% more than it cost me before the budget,” says Mark Fielding, Chief Executive at the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (ISME). “I can see the Government’s point of view: multi-nationals used it to fund themselves leaving Ireland and setting up elsewhere. That doesn’t happen in a

RGDATA Director General, Tara Buckley.

small business. If someone is making a redundancy in a small business, it isn’t because they’re heading off to China or India it’s because they don’t have the work.” As part of Budget 2012, cigarette excise increased by 25c, bringing the price to almost €9. Most retail representatives suggested this will drive cigarette sales further into the hands of the black market. An increase in fuel tax will add cost to the delivery of goods, said Jennings. Combined with the VAT increase, discounts and promotions will become increasingly untenable. “Any person who tries to provide offers for value - three for a pound, €7.99 for bottles of wine, etc - is in trouble. A 2% increase either squeezes the margin, or makes you unable to offer something in the same catchy way,” added the CSNA Chief Executive. Could the budget’s combined effects lead to a return to cross border shopping? RGDATA plan to carry out a study in the first few months of 2012 to ascertain the impact

on its members in the border areas. “There is a higher risk of cross border shopping,” said Retail Ireland’s Gleeson. “The Minister was at pains to point out he doesn’t believe that to be the case. I don’t share that view. The price comparison north and south is closer than it has been. Retailers in the border counties must be very concerned.” NOffLA’s McCabe continued: “It’s clear that any rise in VAT will push people across the border. It’s worrying for our members in those areas. It’s difficult enough to try and survive today. Any tinkering with shops in the border area will certainly affect their turnover.” So where does Budget 2012 leave retailers? In dire straits, reckoned David Fitzsimons. The next step for Retail Excellence Ireland is to “sit down with insolvency companies and organise terms and conditions to facilitate members to cost-effectively access their services.” ISME’s Mark Fielding is on the brink of despair. “They were talking about this

Jim McCabe, Chairman of the National Off-Licence Association. being a visionary budget, but there isn’t a plan A, let alone a plan B,” he told Retail News. “Where’s the vision, where’s the joined-up thinking? They’ve gone through this action plan for jobs, pathways to work, jobs initiatives and jobs strategies. We still haven’t seen any of that because they’ve kicked it all into next year. How many more ways are they going to describe what’s happening in the future? They’re losing credibility very fast.”

Big Retailers Outperform Market THE latest grocery market figures from Kantar Worldpanel in Ireland, for the 12 weeks ending November 27, 2011, show it is a challenging time for the grocery sector as value sales remain flat. However, the top three retailers, Tesco, Dunnes Stores and SuperValu have outperformed the market for the first time in over two years. “In the run up to the all-important Christmas trading period, the top three retailers have been using different methods to drive sales,” explains David Berry, Commercial Director at Kantar Worldpanel. “Tesco has continued to open new stores throughout 2011, helping to build customer loyalty by capturing more shopping occasions from its customers. Dunnes Stores has cemented its return to growth through enhanced sales of traditional branded goods, while SuperValu’s strong sales growth has come from the increasing popularity of its own brand range. “Elsewhere, the growth of the big three retailers contrasts with the subdued performance of Lidl, with sales flat in the latest quarter. However, recent store openings may help to turn this around and bring the retailer back to growth.” Superquinn continues to feel the effects of both the closure of its prominent Naas store and more price-conscious shoppers. Despite this, it appears there is a silver lining, as

Superquinn’s market share in Dublin has increased, hinting at a key area of future growth for the retailer. “Aldi continues to lead the pack, having maintained a phenomenal growth rate of over 20% throughout 2011,” Berry notes. “However, only time will tell whether the retailer will manage to hold on to its shoppers for the crucial Christmas period.” Meanwhile, Grocery inflation is at 3.7% for the 12-week period, ending November 27, 2011, up from 3.2% in the previous period.

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Planning Guidelines Under Threat IRELAND’S Retail Planning Guidelines are in jeopardy after the Government published new draft guidelines proposing their repeal. Minister for the Environment, Phil Hogan TD recently announced the decision, which will include a rise in retail floor space from 3,500 square metres to 4,000 square metres in the Dublin area. In Cork, Limerick, Galway and Waterford, the cap will increase from 3,000 square metres to 3,500 square metres. Elsewhere in the state, the limit remains at 3,000 square metres.

Minister for the Environment, Phil Hogan TD.

The Guidelines maintain the retail warehouse floor space cap at 6,000 square metres; and the petrol filling station floor space cap is to stay at 100 square metres. Minister Hogan’s department has pointed out that the cap in Meath, Kildare and Wicklow - previously considered part of the Greater Dublin area will now drop from 3,500 square metres to 3,000 square metres. “It’s not a huge change,” Frank Gleeson, Retail Ireland Chairman, told Retail News. “Broadly speaking, the caps have worked - they’ve done their job in ensuring we have competition of all sizes in the market, which is good for retail, consumers and jobs, so there’s no real consolidation going to happen like we see in France and the UK. We welcome the status quo. What we see is a small tweaking in the current position.” David Fitzsimons, Retail Excellence Ireland, said the guidelines are a step in the wrong direction. “We believe that any kind of modification on the cap could potentially lead to out-of-town superstores like Tesco Extra or Wal-Mart.

Retail Implications for Proposed Fast Food Ban THE Government is considering banning fast food outlets near schools. Minister for Children, Frances Fitzgerald TD made the announcement during the launch of a publication about obesity amongst children. “As a result of new policy provisions introduced by the UK Government, local authorities in the UK have begun restricting the opening of new takeaways within 400m of any school, youth club or park. I note there is no such similar national provision in the Irish planning framework,” said the Minister, adding that she was consulting the Department of Environment about introducing a ban. Will the proposed planning legislation affect retail outlets with deli counters, which often sell fast food products such as wedges, chips, and sausage rolls? Retail News approached the Minister’s office for a comment. “The Minister only referred to the ‘the opening of new takeaways’,” replied a spokesperson, obliquely. “Any planning guidance being considered would likely not be retrospective.” Retail News also posed the question of whether the move is papering over the cracks of a bigger problem: a lack of education about basic nutrition? “This proposal is only one of suite of measures being considered to address the problem of obesity, including measures to promote more healthier lifestyles,” responded the spokesperson.

These often replicate what’s offered to customers on the high street: a more convenient service to customers, and maybe more competitive prices in the short term. Ultimately, they leave customers bereft of choice and driving longer distances to buy food. Fundamentally, it leads to unemployment. Tesco Extra invest approximately 6% of turnover in labour. The businesses they replicate on the high street, invest approximately 13.5% or 14%. That’s one obvious insight into potential damage.” Mark Fielding, Chief Executive, Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association, said the Minister’s decision will open the floodgates to warehouse retailers. “We have enough retail space in Ireland at the moment to satisfy the UK market, so why do they want to increase it? If you drive around the country, you’ll see the amount of retail shops and units that are left idle,” he said. The guidelines were initiated after the EU-IMF bailout, which recommended a study into existing limits on

Mark Fielding, Chief Executive, Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association. the size of new superstores and out-of-town shopping centres. Tara Buckley, Director General of RGDATA, expressed her concerns that proposed changes to cap sizes were not “backed up by any economic evidence that they would change competition or price.” A Forfás study Review of the Economic Impact of the Retail Cap (April 2011) - concluded that allowing larger superstores in small towns could lead to higher prices. The guidelines can be found at The Department are accepting submissions until December 20,

Help for Small Business? TECHNOLOGY should be introduced to scan containers at sea ports for counterfeit product, a Government report has recommended. The Report of Advisory Group for Small Business made a number of other key recommendations to help ailing businesses in Ireland. These included the production of a one-page guide, outlining services for struggling retailers; a review into burdensome business licences; an Official Notice about the 15-day Prompt Payment Practice; and the development of a voluntary code of conduct on business payments. “These are pragmatic ideas which are capable of early implementation to help small companies access the business supports they require, address some of the challenges of the hidden economy, assist their cash flow by promoting prompt payments, and seek ways to reduce administrative burdens,” said Minister of State for Small Business, John Minister of State for Small Perry TD. Business, John Perry TD.|December 2011|Retail News |7


IBEC Predict Employment Resurgence

IRISH employment levels will be back at pre-crisis levels by 2016, according to a new report published by IBEC and PwC, at IBEC’s flagship CEO Conference in Dublin. The report, ‘Irish Business Beyond the Recession’, makes this bold prediction based on growing export levels, with domestic firms beginning to export new services and products, and shows that the majority of firms remain positive on their business outlook and plan to increase investment and employment next year. The report finds that: • Irish firms will grow their turnover by an average of 5% in 2012, while employment levels will increase by 2%; • Just over one-third of firms plan to increase employment in 2012 and by 2016, 60% of firms plan to have a larger workforce; • Export sales will grow by 44% over the coming five years, while firms expect to see domestic sales rise by 22%, regaining all of the losses of recent years. Many firms operating in the domestic market plan to break into export markets in the coming years; • Irish firms are currently operating at 75% capacity, which is relatively low in both historic and international terms. This bodes well for Ireland’s potential economic growth rate; • Irish companies plan to invest almost €6 billion on plant and machinery in 2012, a 10% increase on the 2011 spend; • Almost 70% of firms will invest in IT projects next year and about 50% will invest in plant and machinery. “Despite the ongoing global economic uncertainty, Irish firms are planning for a bright future,” said IBEC Director General, Danny McCoy. “Companies continue to have ambitious employment and investment plans for next year and the period out to 2016… By 2016, the domestic sector will have regained all of the output lost during the downturn.” PwC Senior Partner, Ronan Murphy, said: “Based on the survey and our experience with clients, Irish businesses have undertaken significant adjustments to their business models, mainly in the areas of cost reduction and process re-engineering, in order to ensure the sustainability of their operations for the future. As a result, Ireland has become more competitive on many fronts and this is particularly important as we strive to hold and grow our international investment. With our competitive tax regime and highly skilled workforce, the fundamentals of Ireland’s economy have remained intact.”

Irish Grocery Code Could Prevail A PROPOSED EU Code concerning retailer-supplier relations will not supersede an Irish code, Paul Kelly, Food and Drink Industry Ireland, has told Retail News. “The Irish process is much further advanced, with a commitment from the Minister for Enterprise to place an enabling provision for the statutory code in legislation early in the New Year,” he said. According to Kelly, the code will bring about “a Paul Kelly, Director at Food sustainable and innovative and Drink Industry Ireland. food supply chain that will benefit farmers, suppliers, retailers and consumers. It is now essential that Minister Bruton acts quickly on the commitment in the Programme for Government by placing the Irish Grocery Code on a statutory basis.”

Tesco Open Rush Store THE new Tesco store at Rush, North County Dublin, has been officially opened, creating 90 jobs in the local area, and marking the latest stage in Tesco’s 2011/2012 €120m investment programme in Ireland. Assisting Tesco Rush Store Manager James McNamara to cut the ribbon was Mayor of Fingal Gerry McGuire. “We believe that the Rush store will be an important addition to the community in Rush and will greatly help affordability of groceries for consumers in the area,” said Store Manager, James McNamara. “We look forward to getting to know our new customers and to building a long and positive relationship with the community in Rush.” Consistent with Tesco’s global commitment to reduce its carbon footprint by 50% by 2012, Tesco Rush features many environmental initiatives, making the store more carbon efficient than a comparable conventional supermarket. The store has a state-of-the-art motion detection lighting system, rainwater harvesting and CO2 cooled fridges and freezers, all of which help to reduce the store’s carbon footprint. Local suppliers to Tesco Rush include spinach grower Colm Leonard and tomato growers, the Kelly Family from Rush, along with Country Crest from Lusk, who supply potatoes and Mayor of Fingal, Gerry McGuire, officially onions to Tesco stores cuts the ribbon on the new Tesco store at nationwide. Rush, North County Dublin.

8|Retail News|December 2011|


SuperValu Irish Food Producers Awards 2011 SEVEN food and beverage companies have been awarded accolades in the SuperValu Irish Food Producers 2011, in association with Enterprise Ireland. The Awards recognise excellence, quality and innovation within the food and beverage sector in Ireland. From hundreds of entries, six

Pictured is Oliver Carty (right), MD, Oliver Carty Ltd, who were named Irish Food Producer of the Year at the SuperValu Irish Food Producers Awards, with SuperValu MD, Martin Kelleher.

winning category entries were chosen and the Irish Food Producer of the Year 2011 was named. Westmeath company, Oliver Carty Ltd, which supplies pork products to SuperValu nationwide, was named the overall Irish Food Producer of the Year. Oliver Carty Ltd were chosen for their considerable investment in new packaging technology, as well as the new and innovative products they have brought to the market this year. Category winners included: • Best Newcomer: Farmers to Market • Best for Quality: Dunn’s of Dublin • Best for Innovation: Oliver Carty Ltd • Best Fresh Product: Keeling’s Ltd • Best Local Producer: St. Tola Goat Cheese • The People’s Choice: Barry’s Tea (Ireland’s favourite Irish brand)

“Ireland’s food and beverage sector is Ireland’s largest indigenous sector and is renowned as one of the best in the world,” said Martin Kelleher, MD, SuperValu. “The SuperValu Irish Food Producer Awards are all about celebrating Irish companies who give this sector its deserving reputation. I want to congratulate Oliver Carty Ltd, all of the other winning companies and entrants in this year’s Awards, who work tirelessly all year round work to consistently deliver quality, fresh, local produce.” The Irish Food Producers Awards are a further example of SuperValu’s commitment to Irish suppliers and producers which includes sales of over €1 billion worth of fresh Irish food every year. In 2010, the total purchases of Irish goods and services made by SuperValu, was worth over €1.6 billion to the Irish economy, serving to both create and protect almost 30,000 Irish jobs in the farm, food and retail sector.

Galway Seafood Companies Set to Grow Sales by €2m A GROUP of six ambitious seafood entrepreneurs from County Galway are set to benefit from an intensive business programme. The official graduation ceremony for the Galway Seafood Development Programme took place recently at BIM’s offices at the Docks in Galway city. If business plans for the companies are successful, €2m in increased sales and 16 potential job opportunities will be achieved by 2014. The ‘Galway Seafood Development Programme’ was introduced in the Western region after a similar, highly-successful syllabus was made available to participants in coastal communities in West Cork, Wexford and Donegal. Aimed at both start-up and existing seafood enterprises, the course was co-ordinated by BIM, in conjunction with Galway County and City Enterprise Board. Training and mentoring support was delivered by ARMS Marketing and Training. The course is target driven and tailored to each of the company’s specific needs, providing the companies with the necessary tools to achieve their business objectives. Pictured at the official graduation ceremony for the ‘Galway Seafood Development Programme’ Participants were mentored in core areas of are (back row, l-r): Aisling Roche, Arms business development, including strategic Marketing and Training (Course Provider); Ian planning, market trends and distribution, Mannix, BIM; Mairtín Walsh, BIM; Michael and route to market. Browne of Aran Gourmet; Freda Fleming of Fleming Seafoods and Seán Seosamh O’ Companies that participated in the course Flatharta; (front row, l-r): Gearóid de Brún of Aran were: Comharchumman Sliogeisc Chonamara, Gourmet; Breda Fox of Galway County and City Fleming Seafoods, Aran Gourmet, Breizon, CS Enterprise Board; Guenael Trahan of Breizon Fish and John Joe Flaherty. Limited and Cathal Sexton of CS Fish Limited.

SuperValu is stocking a new premium brand of free-range Farmers to Market Irish chicken, with an estimated value of €1.3m in retail sales. Pictured with the free range chicken at the farm in Cavan are farmers (back row, l-r): Maxwell Cherry, Terry Lennon, Michael Courtney, Eugene O’Gorman, SuperValu Carrickmacross, and John Smith; (front row, l-r): John McGeough and Phil Courtney of Farmers to Market, who won the Best Newcomer Category at the SuperValu Irish Food Producers Awards 2011.

ProSweets Cologne 2012 PROSWEETS Cologne 2012 will open its doors from January 29 to February 1, 2012, showcasing the entire range of products offered by suppliers for the production, processing and packaging of confectionery. More than 300 exhibiting companies from 32 countries have registered for the trade fair, which includes product areas for Raw Materials and Other Ingredients, Confectionery Packaging and Packaging Technology, Machines and Plants for the Confectionery Industry, and secondary segments such as Food Safety and Quality Management, while products for the production, processing and packaging of snack items will be exhibited at ProSweets Cologne for the first time. ProSweets Cologne 2012 will occupy Hall 10.1 at the Cologne exhibition centre. See www. for more information.|December 2011|Retail News |9

News EUROSPAR Launches 2012 Charity Calendar EUROSPAR have launched their 2012 Calendar in conjunction with their charity partner, Rehab, with the aim of raising €10,000 for the organisation. The ‘Activity Calendar’ features a different game or colouring sheet each month and is now on sale in 56 EUROSPAR stores nationwide for €4, with all proceeds going to Rehab. The work of three Irish children features as part of the calendar, after EUROSPAR ran a national competition to find the best colouring talent in the country. Hannah Doherty from Dublin 2 (aged 5), Grace Dervan from Naas, Co. Kildare (aged 11), and Sophie McNamara (aged 7), were the winners, having submitted entries to their local EUROSPAR.

“Following on from the very successful ‘1 Day for Rehab’ fundraising initiative last June, where we raised €40,000, we were keen to develop a new mechanism to drive fundraising around Christmas and into the New Year,” said Suzanne Weldon, Marketing & Communications Director, BWG Foods. “We think the calendar is a fun and relevant way of ensuring that Rehab stays to the fore of people’s minds throughout the entire year and we hope our EUROSPAR shoppers across Ireland will support John McGuire, Rehab’s Director of Fundraising, with Ruby Kelly and Max Kelly, and Suzanne Weldon, this worthy cause – it makes an Marketing & Communications Director, BWG Foods. ideal stocking filler!”

Flogas Wins Injunctions Against Trugas FLOGAS Ireland Limited has been successful in protecting its position as a leading supplier of LP Gas in the LP Gas cylinder market. Flogas has been forced to take legal proceedings against Trugas Limited, based in Castlebellingham, Co. Louth. As part of these proceedings, the company sought a number of

interlocutory injunctions against Trugas Limited. The interlocutory application was heard on Thursday and Friday, 24 and 25 November 2011, and the Court awarded Flogas every injunction it sought. The effect of this award is that Trugas Limited, its servants and agents are

prohibited by Order of the Commercial division of the High Court from filling or handling Flogas cylinders in any manner whatsoever. Flogas has not alone been successful in its application against Trugas; the costs of the action have also been awarded to Flogas.

10|Retail News|December 2011|

Industry News SuperValu Mini-Programmes on TV SUPERVALU revealed its latest TV advertising innovation at the end of November. The campaign, entitled ‘Spend Less this Christmas’ will see the supermarket launch a series of 80-second mini-programmes, in conjunction with well-known chef Kevin Dundon (pictured). These mini-programmes will demonstrate to consumers how to make the most of their budget this Christmas, whilst still being able to prepare mouth-watering festive food for the family. All four programmes feature Kevin Dundon providing viewers with delicious recipes and seasonal inspiration, with two of the programmes featuring the Irish suppliers who provide SuperValu’s 100% Irish turkeys and hams.

Country Crest MD Wins Top Award COUNTRY Crest’s Managing Director, Michael Hoey, received the JC Savage Fingal Person of the Year Excellence Award recently. The Awards, which recognise the efforts of local companies who promote excellence in the quality of their products, services and customer care, were organised by the Fingal Dublin Chamber. The Award is named in memory of JC Savage, one of Fingal’s best known and most popular businessmen, who passed away last year. JC was a founding member of the Chamber and was a legend in retailing throughout the country. Pictured are (l-r): Siobhan Moore, President, Fingal Dublin Chamber; Michael Hoey, Managing Director, Country Crest; Geraldine Savage & Robert Hilliard, Dublin Airport.

Chef Factor Winner Announced

Tesco Opens Zero Carbon Store in Cabra TESCO have opened a new supermarket in Cabra, Dublin, creating 150 jobs and marking the latest stage in Tesco’s 2011/2012 €120m investment programme in Ireland. As part of Tesco’s commitment to reduce its carbon footprint, Tesco Cabra is the first Zero Carbon supermarket in Ireland and the fifth within the Tesco Group worldwide. The store features a host of cutting-edge, environmentally-friendly technologies, which help to maintain a zero carbon footprint from the store’s operations. These include refrigeration which uses CO2 to cool the freezers and fridges rather than traditional refrigerant gases and a biodiesel fuelled CHP plant that heats the store and generates electricity very efficiently. Pictured are the staff at the opening of Tesco’s new store at the Maple Centre, Cabra, Dublin.

National Seafood Centre Opens THE Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, officially named and formally opened the new National Seafood Centre in Clonakilty, Co. Cork, recently. The Centre is a co-located ‘one stop shop’ for the seafood related functions of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority and BIM’s Business Innovation and Seafood Product development activities. The idea of co-locating all of the State seafood industry related services in one building is designed to improve co-ordination, and maximise the sharing of expertise in order to enhance development of the seafood industry in Ireland.

DARINA and Rachel Allen were delighted to announce former talk talk employee, Wayne Halloran, as the winner of Irish food producers Cully & Sully’s online contest, Chef Factor 2011. Wayne Halloran secured a place on January’s coveted 12-week Ballymaloe cookery course, including accommodation, worth over €12,000. The top prize also includes two weeks with Colum O’Sullivan (Sully) and Cullen Allen (Cully) to learn the ways of the food business. The winner was decided by an audience of Chef Factor entrants along with judges Cully, Sully, Rachel and Darina Allen who were all invited to vote for their favorite contestant at the Live Final in Ballymaloe recently. Chef Factor is expected to return for 2012. Winner Wayne is pictured (centre) with Rachel and Darina Allen, Cully and Sully.



12|Retail News||December 2011|

Industry News €100m Expansion for Midleton Distillery IN response to the continued growth of Jameson on world markets, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard has announced a €100m investment in the expansion of its distillery in Midleton, Co. Cork. In the year to end June 2011, a total of 3.4m cases of Jameson were sold worldwide. As part of the investment, 60 manufacturing and technical jobs will be created, bringing the company’s total employee numbers in Ireland to 560. 30 of the jobs will be at the distillery in Midleton and 30 at the company’s bottling plant at Fox & Geese in Dublin. “We are very pleased to announce the investment in our distillery at Midleton. It is a reflection of the international success of Jameson and the great future potential for the brand,” said Anna Malmhake, Chairman and CEO, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard. “Jameson is now in its twenty-third consecutive year of growth and is experiencing double-digit growth in 40 markets.”

Special Delivery at Topaz A BEAUTIFUL baby girl who announced her arrival into the world in dramatic circumstances at a petrol station in North County Dublin recently, returned to the Topaz site two weeks later to meet staff who were on duty that night. Amy Balfe and her partner Thomas Donnery were en route to the Rotunda Hospital from their home in Rush, when Amy felt a call of nature and asked Thomas to pull into the Topaz site at Lissenhall, Swords. Neither had any idea of how close Amy was to giving birth, and a short while later, baby Katie was born. It transpired later that Amy had chosen a good place to stop off. The petrol station is where Amy had her first job – she worked there for four years – and because of that and the fact she was a regular customer, she knew some of the staff on duty. Frank Gleeson, Retail Director, Topaz, is pictured with Amy, Thomas and baby Katie at the Topaz store.

BWG Foods Streamlines Imaging Environment

BYTEK MPS Limited, an independently-owned business equipment company, and MJ Flood, Ireland’s largest privately-owned office technology company, have announced a €500,000 managed print contract with BWG Foods. Spearheaded by Bytek, the deal involves a print and imaging upgrade to the latest Develop stand-alone and multi-function devices for BWG Foods’ nationwide Value Centre Cash and Carry network, as well as a machine refresh at its headquarters in Dublin. The project has completely streamlined BWG’s print environment, reducing overall print costs by 20%. Pictured are (l-r): Neill Farrell, Trade Manager, MJ Flood; Willie O’Byrne Managing Director, BWG Foods; Veronica Sullivan, Head of IT, BWG Foods; Liam Clarke, Director, Bytek MPS; and Frank Byrne, IT Manager, BWG Foods.

New MD at Unilever Ireland

Irish MEP Honoured

JILL Ross (pictured) has been appointed Managing Director, Unilever Ireland. She was previously Customer Director with Unilever UK and Ireland. Based in Unilever Ireland’s head office in Citywest, Dublin, Jill will lead the company’s Ireland-based sales and marketing team to ensure that Irish customers and consumers receive quality Unilever products at affordable prices. She will be responsible for developing and growing Unilever’s business in Ireland, with a particular focus on strong innovation and retail development, working in close partnership with Unilever’s retail and wholesale customers.

MAIREAD McGuinness MEP was declared ‘MEP of the Year for Agriculture, 2011’, during a prestigious awards ceremony in Brussels. The Ireland East MEP was one of just 17 Members of the European Parliament to be recognised by their fellow MEP colleagues for their contribution at a European level. In accepting the award, McGuinness expressed thanks to the organisers of the MEP Awards and her colleagues in Parliament: “Agriculture has always been a key priority for me in my work as an MEP and in my prior career as a journalist who specialised in the agri-industry. The issues facing agriculture are intrinsically linked to those regarding the environment, food security and food safety remain very challenging, so we have a great deal of work ahead.”

Delivering Cleaner Air New sulphur standard for residential coal sold outside ‘smoky’ coal ban areas and registration requirements for fuel suppliers Approximately half a million tonnes of bituminous (or ‘smoky’) coal was imported for household use in 2010, resulting in the release of over 4,000 tonnes of sulphur dioxide into the air we breathe. Limiting the sulphur content of smoky coal helps to protect human health and the environment by reducing air pollution, particularly during the winter months. The Air Pollution Act, 1987 (Marketing, Sale and Distribution of Fuels) (Amendment) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 270 of 2011) came into effect on 7 June 2011. Under these Regulations, anybody who places smoky coal on the market, including retailers, for residential use outside the smoky coal ban areas must ensure the following: i.

that the sulphur content of the smoky coal is no greater than 0.7% by weight, and


a certificate is held showing the sulphur content of the coal is in compliance.

The National Standards Authority of Ireland has prepared an annual traceability audit system, known as SWiFT 7, for demonstrating compliance with the new Regulations, and this provides the certificate to be held by those placing coal on the market. The Regulations require certain operators in the residential solid fuel supply business to register with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) before 31st December 2011. Those who must register include all fuel wholesalers of smoky coal but only those retailers whose sole or main business involves the sale of smoky coal (i.e those with more than 50% of turnover from coal). Please note, this requirement does not apply to the majority of general retailers for whom the sale of smoky coal is not their main business activity. All retailers must ensure that their fuel wholesalers are registered with the EPA. The EPA will maintain registers to support enforcement by local authorities. There is currently no charge for registration. Fixed-payment notices of up to €500 can be applied by local authorities against fuel wholesalers and obligated retailers who have not registered with the EPA before the deadline. Persons who are required to register or with queries regarding registration can contact the EPA at the address below: Environmental Protection Agency Solid Fuel Registration, Resource Use Unit Johnstown Castle Estate P.O. Box 3000 Wexford

Tel.: Fax : E-mail: Website:

053 9160600 053 9160699 coalbaggingregistrations/

Following registration with the EPA, the Minister encourages the use of the above SWiFT 7 logo on product, which can act as a marque of quality to consumers and assist local authorities with their enforcement activities. The EPA can refuse or revoke the registration of a bagging operator or fuel supplier where it is not satisfied that the product being supplied is compliant with the legal requirements. Local authorities carry out inspections of fuel merchants and retailers to ensure compliance with the Regulations. Any person or body found to be to be in breach of the regulations may be issued with fixed-payment notices of up to €1,000 or face prosecution under the Air Pollution Act 1987, which provides for fines of up to €5,000 and/or imprisonment for any term not exceeding six months on summary conviction. The smoky coal ban continues to apply in certain designated cities and towns and it is not permissible to sell or distribute smoky coal within such areas under any circumstances. Complaints regarding the sale of unauthorised fuels or smoky emissions should be reported to the environment section of your local authority.

14|Retail News|December 2011|

Shop Profile

Pictured outside the Trim store are (l-r): Trish Smith, store manager, Barry Gillen, store owner, and Tommy Devlin, Regional Development Manager.

Barry Gillen’s Londis forecourt store in Trim, Co. Meath, has undergone numerous developments since the entrepreneurial retailer took over the shop, but this year’s extensive revamp saw the popular store more than double in size.

Londis Grows in Trim

BARRY Gillen is the epitome of the modern, entrepreneurial retailer, which is somewhat surprising, considering he began his professional career in a much different capacity. Barry originally began working as a teacher, but like many entrepreneurs, he always had the urge to work for himself. “I took a career break as a teacher and leased a shop,” Barry tells Retail News how his change of career came about. “I was able to experience working as a shop owner, but I still had the safety net of returning to teaching if things did not work out or I found I did not like it.” Barry did like running his own shop and what’s more, he was extremely good at it. When the opportunity arose to acquire the forecourt site on the Dublin Road in Trim, Barry jumped at the chance. A resident of nearby

Navan, Barry regularly played golf in Trim and he knew the town and the forecourt well. With the experience he had gained in retail and his local knowledge, he believed he could realise the potential the site held. From the moment Barry acquired the shop, he chose to work with Londis and began a very successful working relationship that continues to this day. “At the time I took over this site, it had the forecourt, a car show-room and a very small shop,” he recalls. “In order to take advantage of the demand that existed around the shop, it needed to become larger and offer more stock and services. I chose to work with the Londis Group because when I was a looking for a partner for this project, Londis offered me a package that was designed to grow my business and provided all the advice and support I needed.”|December 2011|Retail News|15

Shop Profile Stunning New Look

Working with Londis, Barry grew his business successfully and over the years, the shop increased in size in phases. In May of this year, Barry undertook his largest investment yet: more than doubling the square footage of retail space and installing the latest Londis look, to create a stunning forecourt, designed to maximise the shop’s potential. “I thought long and hard about this latest investment, given the economic climate,” Barry admits. “In discussions with Londis, we all agreed that even a significant investment would see a return if the project was undertaken correctly. Trim has a very well established community: the majority of the houses built over the last decade are occupied and have been so for many years. This end of the town in particular has a lot of houses, while the largest shops are on the other side of town. So in the end, I felt confident that this would be a wise investment.” Barry kept the shop trading throughout the development and regular customers were happy to accommodate the inconvenience while their local shop underwent some significant changes. As well as increasing the size of the shop and relocating a number of key elements, including the deli, Barry was able to create a large sit-down area and introduce the latest Londis finish to create a fresh, clean, modern and comfortable environment for his customers to enjoy.

Increased Sales Volumes

The store owner is delighted with the end result. “The shop looked absolutely fantastic when it was finished,” he enthuses. “I received a lot of compliments from regular customers about the new shop. More importantly, it began trading briskly. During the development, we replaced old units and installed more energy efficient versions. That has helped to reduce

running costs, while the volume of sales has increased across the shop.” The off-licence has been particularly successful, with Barry estimating that wine sales are up about 50%, while sales of spirits have also grown substantially. Another area of growth has been the store’s increased coffee trade. “As well as a high quality bean-to-cup coffee, I chose to include a Barista alongside the deli,” Barry explains. “It is labour intensive, as it needs to be operated by a staff member, but it provides the best possible coffee and it is working well with the sit-down area.”

Competitive Pricing

Barry is keen to make sure that this community shop has a friendly face for his regular customers. Once again, Londis provides Barry with excellent advice and support on top quality customer service, to make sure staff in Gillen’s Londis provide all customers with a fast and friendly service. Barry himself leads by example on the shop floor, where he is always ready for a bit of banter with visitors to his shop. Between Barry, his staff and his symbol group partner in Londis, they have created a community shop at the heart of historic Trim that meets all the needs of that community, from quality products at value for money prices to great customer service.

The store’s ambient grocery offering was also increased significantly, and the store is already reaping the rewards. “In particular, the Heritage range from Londis is selling strongly,” notes Barry. “Overall, Londis ensure that I have a large range of value deals to offer my customers, to keep a basket of goods here competitively priced, especially given the quality we offer. Trim does get an increase in trade during the summer - this year, the Solheim Cup gave a bit of a boost to local businesses - but this shop is very much a community shop and my trade has to remain strong year-round.” The right location and product selection would count for little, however, without the right staff.

Trim Castle, one of the largest AngloNorman castles in Ireland, stands out in the heritage town of Trim, Co. Meath.

Fact File Owner:

Barry Gillen


Dublin Road, Trim, Co. Meath


2,800 square feet

Number of Staff: 16 full time, 4 part time Opening Hours: 24 hours, 7 days a week

16|Retail News|December 2011|

SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards

Stunning Success for SuperValu Balbriggan SuperValu Balbriggan was named Off Licence of the Year at the Edward Dillons SuperValu Off Licence of the Year 2011/2012 Awards. SUPERVALU Balbriggan has been named Off Licence of the Year 2011/2012 at the Edward Dillons SuperValu off Licence of the Year Awards. Luke Moriarty, Brian Carrick and Mary Quinlan from SuperValu Balbriggan accepted their Award from Andy O’Hara, Commercial Director of Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd and Donagh McClafferty, Category Manager, SuperValu. The runners up in this year’s awards included Alex Martin, Didier Seguy and Tommy Grimes from Super Valu, Midleton, Co. Cork; Lillian Twomey and Liam Ryan from SuperValu Glanmire, Co. Cork; and Shane Kelly and Justina Petraskaite from SuperValu, Boyle, Co. Roscommon. The 20 finalist stores were judged by independent consultant Carthage Conlon and were assessed on a range of criteria, including overall appearance, innovation and customer service.

Trip of a Lifetime

The winner and the runners up of the SuperValu Off Licence of the Year win a trip of a lifetime to South America, where they will visit the vineyards of Vina Carmen in Chile and Dona Paula in Argentina. During the trip, they will visit the stunning vineyards on the slopes of the Andes mountains, meet the team of talented winemakers at the respective wineries and see the winemaking processes first hand. They will also get to sample the latest vintages from Vina Carmen and Dona Paula. “This competition has now been running for 19 years, and each year the standard of entry keeps on improving,” commented Andy O’Hara, Commercial Director of Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd. “Edward Dillon are delighted to be

Tommy Grimes, Alex Martin and Didier Seguy of SuperValu Midelton, Runners Up in the Edward Dillons SuperValu Off Licence of the Year, are pictured with Martin Kelleher, MD, SuperValu, and Andy O’Hara, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd.

Pictured are Martin Kelleher, MD, SuperValu, with Luke Moriarty, Mary Quinlan, Brian Carrick from SuperValu Balbriggan, Winner of the Edward Dillon SuperValu Off Licence of the Year 2011/2012, with Andy O’Hara, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd.

associated with such a prestigious awards programme. Congratulations to the team at Super Valu Balbriggan for winning this year’s SuperValu Off Licence Of The Year Award. They have done a superb job in the face of challenging economic conditions. I would also like to say ‘well done’ to the runners up and to each of the finalists for their tremendous efforts.”

Pictured at the Edward Dillon SuperValu Off License of the Year Awards 2011/2012 are Tony Reade, Edward Dillon and Co. Ltd, with Lillian Twomey and Liam Ryan of SuperValu Glanmire, Runners Up in the Edward Dillons SuperValu Off Licence of the Year, and Donagh McClafferty, Category Manager, SuperValu.

Shane Kelly and Justina Petraskaite of SuperValu Boyle, Runners Up in the Edward Dillons SuperValu Off Licence of the Year Awards, are pictured with Tony Reade, Edward Dillon and Co. Ltd, and Kevin O’Callaghan, SuperValu.

Tobacco Focus From Ireland’s Leading Tobacco Company

Introduction of Lower Ignition Propensity Cigarettes What?

Lower Ignition Propensity (LIP) is a new tobacco regulation requiring cigarettes to comply with standards that increase the chances of a cigarette selfextinguishing when left at rest.


The new regulation has been introduced by the European Union and aims to reduce accidental fires occurring as a result of burning cigarettes being left unattended.


The new standard will apply to all cigarettes across the European Union from 17th November 2011. LIP cigarettes have already been introduced in the USA, Canada, Australia and Finland.

How do LIP cigarettes work? The new cigarettes contain a specifically designed d cigarette paper that includes narrow bands which h in effect act as speed bumps. When smoked normally, ally, the cigarettes should not self-extinguish, however er they may self-extinguish if they are left at rest.

Less Air Flow Area More Air Flow Area

The taste and flavour of cigarettes will not be affected by the change. Adult smokers should ould find the same taste and flavour they have always enjoyed. The regulation only applies to cigarettes and does oes not extend to roll your own or other smoking products. ucts.

Our cigarettes and tobacco products are produced to the highest standard of quality. If you are not completely satisďŹ ed with any of our products, please contact us on our free phone number.

1800 303 535

18|Retail News|December 2011|

Centra Full Roast Coffee Centra has signed a €2m deal with Bewley’s to supply its new full roast coffee bean, which will be freshly ground for the ‘on the go’ coffee range, sold throughout its 463 stores nationwide.

Launches Full Roast 100% Fairtrade Coffee CENTRA has launched a new full roast coffee, which is 100% Fairtrade certified, following a €2m deal with Bewley’s. The new full roast coffee is a delicious blend of

Pictured at the announcement of the deal are Ciara McClafferty, Category Manager, Centra, and Jim Corbett, Managing Director, Bewley’s.

premium Arabica coffee beans sourced from Brazil, Columbia and Nicaragua. Centra sells over 8m cups of coffee every year or over 160,000 cups each week, and has rolled out its new full roast coffee in response to changing consumption patterns of coffee drinkers in Ireland. According to the latest research, despite the recession, coffee consumption and sales have remained relatively unaffected. The coffee in-store category has continued to grow in recent years, with the volume of take-away coffee increasing by 38%, prompting Centra to launch its new coffee bean and continue to build on its position as one of Ireland’s most popular destinations for ‘on the go’ coffee. “We have continued to grow our coffee sales despite the recession and downturn in the economy,” explains Ciara McClafferty, Category Manager, Centra. “Coffee is still viewed by many as an affordable indulgence, with good coffee becoming something of a necessity, as palates have become more sophisticated and demanding. However, Irish coffee drinkers are going back to basics and purchasing more|December 2011|Retail News|19

Centra Full Roast Coffee Indeed, Centra forecourt stores account for 20% of the group’s total coffee sales, particularly before 9am each morning, while Centra stores represent the highest sales for the mid-morning and lunch time coffee trade. Centra’s forecourt store in Charleville Co. Cork is reported to sell more cups of coffee than any other Centra store throughout Ireland, with over 130,000 cups sold each year.

Supporting Irish Business

cups of regular coffee over lattes and cappuccinos.” According to Ciara, the highest sales of coffee are ‘on the go’ and before 9am in the morning, as Irish people crave that ever important kick-start to the day. “Due to the current economy, consumers are trading away from cafés across to convenience stores like Centra, which offer great quality coffee and a value for money proposition which better fulfils the needs of our consumer,” she notes.

The Rise of Coffee Culture

Traditionally seen as a nation of tea drinkers, it seems that Irish consumers have really embraced coffee culture. “Coffee culture is well established in Ireland, particularly among the younger generation,” stresses Ciara. “Irish people, despite cutbacks, still love their coffee and are drinking more than ever before, with the average cups of coffee purchased per day at Centra increasing from 1.5 to 2 cups.”

The new deal between Centra and Bewley’s is good news for both Irish brands. “It is a great example of two strong indigenous Irish brands doing significant business together and in so doing, helping to secure Irish jobs in addition to providing consumers with a great tasting quality product at good value prices,” said Jim Corbett, Managing Director, Bewley’s. From Centra’s point of view, signing such a valuable deal with an Irish supplier was of paramount concern. “We are fully committed to supporting Irish suppliers and Irish businesses, while providing our consumers with a quality product. It is the policy of Centra to source from Irish suppliers and producers as much as possible and 75% of products sold in our stores are sourced or produced in Ireland,” highlighted Ciara McClafferty. “In finding a supplier partner to work with, Bewley’s was the ideal choice as an Irish supplier with a great Irish heritage and well established coffee credentials. “It is hugely important that we identified a supplier partner to work with to help develop our coffee offer who had the level of expertise required. After extensive quality benchmarking on the coffee bean and blend, Bewley’s was identified as the preferred supplier. Bewley’s has the technical expertise to allow us to deliver our great quality coffee offer in-store, from machines to training and equipment.”

Commitment to Sustainability

By purchasing Fairtrade coffee, Centra is supporting marginalised suppliers and workers, helping them move from a state of vulnerability to security and economic self sustainability. “Supplying Fairtrade coffee, demonstrates Centra’s commitment to developing sustainable and ethical

relationships with suppliers, both at home and abroad,” explains Ciara. “Ethical and responsible sourcing is one of the cornerstones of our business and is vital in developing long term mutually beneficial and stable relationships with our suppliers, whether they are in Ireland, or in South America, where we source our coffee beans.” Centra’s goal for the new full roast bean is simple, according to Ciara: “to continue to grow our coffee sales in spite of the recession and to be the number one coffee destination in the market place. With the improvement of coffee standards in Ireland, consumers expect a café standard when purchasing coffee in-store and this is what we supply with our new full roast bean.”

20|Retail News|December 2011|

Retail News Interview



As Chairman of Retail Ireland and Retail Director of Topaz, Frank Gleeson is at the coal-face of the big issues facing retailers: the high cost of trading, the growing problem of smuggling and how to get consumers spending again. FRANK Gleeson is immersed in the retail business, and has been all his life. The son of a Galway draper, as soon as he left school, Frank began working part-time in retail. His CV includes eight years with Xtravision, where he worked his way up from store manager to Group Sales Manager, five years with O’Brien’s Off Licence Group, and two stints with Statoil, now Topaz, where he has worked in a variety of roles, including his current position of Retail Director. “FMCG is what I do,” he states simply. “I do it because I have a passion for retail: you don’t get into this business unless you enjoy it. I love the fast pace. I don’t look on it as work: it’s almost a vocation for me.” 2008 was a big year for Gleeson and Topaz, when he took responsibility for the development and roll-out of the Topaz brand, a massive undertaking. “We transformed 300 stations, 300 trucks and 60 depots in the space of 12 months,” he recalls proudly. Things may have become a little less hectic

since, but life is never dull when you’re managing 115 retail operations and 210 dealers. I’m really lucky that I have a very strong team working with me: they all have the same passion for the business.” As if that wasn’t enough to keep him occupied, Gleeson is also a Main Board Director for the Washingtonbased NACS (the International Association for Convenience and Fuel Retailing), as well as a Director of RRAI (Responsible Retailers of Alcohol Ireland). In his spare time, he is Chairman of Parnells GAA club. It’s his work as Retail Director of Topaz, however, which Gleeson believes offers him a unique insight into retailing, as the company operates as both a retailer, through companyowned forecourt stores, and a supplier of fuel to independent retailers. This experience continues to serve him well as Chairman of Retail Ireland, IBEC’s national representative body for the retail sector in Ireland, a role he took on during summer 2011.

“What I’d like, as Chairman of Retail Ireland, is to ensure we maximise the voice for retailers within the national framework,” he explains. “I’m very energised and excited by the opportunity that Retail Ireland presents. I’m always learning and always listening and if somebody has a good idea or an issue they want to talk about, I’m accessible all the time.” Retail Ireland, Gleeson insists, is “a very strong voice for retail in Ireland, and not just for big retailers. We welcome the opportunity to represent members, large and small, in a fair and open way. We also want to ensure that our members’ issues are being dealt with. The key thing for us is that we’re in tune with what retailers are saying, that we’re prioritising the big issues. Having sat on a board that deals with legislative issues in the United States, I’ve learned that rather than waiting for legislation to be forced upon you, you need to anticipate what legislation is coming and make sure you participate in the discussion to|December 2011|Retail News|21

Retail News Interview ensure the right solution The potential legislation to ban is implemented so that Upward Only Rent Reviews we can help all retailers retrospectively is “a huge to have a long-term, Constitutional issue”. sustainable business.” He believes that being part of the IBEC family allows Retail Ireland to access the employers’ group’s vast resources, including detailed economic information and access to Government departments. Indeed, Retail Ireland’s mission dovetails perfectly with IBEC’s three-pronged strategy of knowledge (“getting good quality data and information out to as wide group of key people as possible, because they can use it to make better decisions”), connections (“using the good network in Retail Ireland to move the industry forward as a whole”) and influence (“we need to have more influence over how legislation is lot of people who have lost their jobs, shaped and to make sure it is relevant we can’t cut any more. You still have to and appropriate for the particular open your stores and you have to staff industry we operate in”). them. Our rates of pay are out of kilter. Across the market, we probably have inflated rates of pay, from managerial Basket Case level right down to the minimum wage. While he’s extremely positive about That has clearly been documented.” the difference Retail Ireland can make, According to Gleeson, the entire Gleeson is under no illusions about retail industry owes a debt of gratitude the state of Ireland’s retail industry to the Quick Service Food Alliance in the current economic climate: “It’s for their perseverance in “breaking been horrendous. Since mid-2008, the the JLC system. At least we have an retail trade has been a basket case. opportunity now for Minister Bruton We’re looking at total retail sales to put in place a new system that down in excess of 25%, so we’re back makes sense for everybody in new at 2004/05 levels. Nobody has been market economics.” Indeed, he calls on untouched by this. The hardest hit Government to put in place “a robust are anyone who was relying on the and practical solution that is based on construction industry, like furniture current legislation and current market and electrical suppliers, but it is right conditions that is easy to operate and across the board: clothing is down, appropriate for our costs”. footwear is down, convenience retailing is down and supermarkets are down. The big problem we face is that we Upward-Only Rent Reviews have had a decline in retail sales but The high cost of retail rents is another no real change in the cost base, so we bugbear: “There is no doubt all of the are looking at net profitability being retailers who grew during the Celtic eroded across every retailer in the Tiger paid inflated rents or have had market.” rent reviews that have driven those rents up to unsustainable levels. So we need a correction, and that correction The Demise of the JLC needs to happen. I’m not convinced The big issues facing the trade remain how it will happen. I think the market the same, with the high costs of doing will probably correct it over a period of business in Ireland top of the agenda. time as people go out of business.” Staff costs remains one of the biggest He feels that any legislation to factors: “While you can cut numbers of ban Upward Only Rent Reviews people in retail, and there have been a

retrospectively is “a huge Constitutional issue” and remains unconvinced that it will ever happen, particularly after the Governments recent u-turn on the issue. While admitting that such a move would be very welcome for retailers, it could prove a huge problem in terms of landlord investment, which would have wider implications for the overall economy.

The Rates Issue

Local Authority Rates are another thorny area, and one where there is no simple solution. “As the volume of business has dropped, there are more people carrying a higher burden, just like the tax situation. Local Authority Rates haven’t come down that quickly because the councils have no money themselves, so it is a Catch 22 – it’s a big issue for retailers.” So what can be done? “Other than lobbying each of the councils, and for each of them to restructure, I can’t see a whole lot changing, because the councils have to balance their books. They are not in a position where they can borrow to fund their activity. They have to make sure they tax the businesses and households in their areas, so they can provide the services to that area. The councils have to work on their cost base: if they can take their cost base down, they can reduce their charges, but I don’t see any quick fix.”

22|Retail News|December 2011|

Retail News Interview

Consumer confidence is key to Ireland’s economic renewal: “We need to get people back spending again. The big challenge is to stimulate demand through more retail sales.”

The Smuggling Conundrum

Given the current climate, it is not surprising that the issue of smuggling has raised its head, and has been particularly well-documented in the tobacco sector. However, recent months have also seen the emergence of the very real and growing problem of illegal diesel laundering, which, given his day job with Topaz, is unsurprisingly high on Gleeson’s agenda. “The latest statistics suggest that up to 12% of all diesel sold in Ireland is illegal laundered product, which equates to €150m per year. And this figure is growing. The exchequer can see it, because their figures are down, and that money is going straight to criminals. Our retailers are probably making four or five cent per litre of diesel sold, whereas criminals are making up to 70c per litre. This is a crazy situation.” Retail Ireland have put forward a potential solution, which they feel would cut down on illegal diesel sales very quickly. They have called for the equalisation of duty between gasoil, marked gasoil and diesel, with genuine consumers of marked gasoil then claiming back the difference in duty. “This puts the onus on the individual to prove that their purchase of marked gasoil is legitimate,” Gleeson notes. He also calls for stronger legislation to ensure that diesel is treated the

same as unleaded fuel, “so that fire officers can close down these illegal facilities on safety grounds”. He feels that greater powers for the Gardaí would also help the situation, including higher fines for those found guilty of selling illegally laundered diesel: “The fines are so low, and the profits so large, in terms of both diesel smuggling and tobacco smuggling, that it is no disincentive to those involved.” According to Gleeson, “the problem of tobacco smuggling is huge, but illegal diesel laundering has the potential to be much worse. We don’t see fuel prices falling or less tax on fuel, which could mean that the problem gets worse and as it gets worse, it will take more from the national exchequer.”

Retailer-Supplier Relations

There has been a lot written over the last few years about retailersupplier relationships, with many suppliers, and indeed an Oireachtas Committee (in April 2010) alleging that many retailers were engaging in unfair practices in their dealings with suppliers. Being in the unique position of operating as both retailer and supplier, Gleeson is perhaps better qualified than any to discuss the issue. As such, he rejects out-of-hand the idea that Ireland needs a legislative Code of Practice to cover retailer-supplier relations.

“There is competition at all levels in the market: I don’t believe that any one retailer is dominating,” he opines. “The market operates in a fairly free way, so the last thing we need is more legislation that makes it difficult for retailers or suppliers to do business.” Gleeson, as pointed out in last month’s Retail News, feels that a forthcoming European Directive, covering the vertical relationships in the food supply chain, will supersede any specific Irish legislation and render it pretty much redundant: “The last thing we need to do is put in place a special piece of legislation for Ireland when it’s not necessary.” He feels that existing competition legislation is perfectly adequate to deal with unfair practices. “Most retailers operate ethically,” he states. “Most of the bigger retailers are PLCs, so they have to operate to a set of principles. Suppliers may deem them to be dominant, but if you are a big customer, you deserve a better price than a small customer. With Topaz, for example, depending on how much you buy from us, the price could be different, for obvious reasons: it’s more economically viable for us to deliver a million litres than 100,000 litres. It’s a case of supply and demand.” In all of his 25 years working at the coal-face of retail, Gleeson has never experienced retailers demanding ‘hello money’ to stock a product. “I|December 2011|Retail News|23

Retail News Interview have seen incentives to place product on promotion, to stimulate customer demand: it’s not uncommon for a new product launch to have an offer and to be placed in a prominent position in-store, but that is usually a consumer-led offer.” Is it not the case that ‘Hello money’ is effectively hidden, as a promotional charge? “I haven’t seen it. It doesn’t make sense for a retailer to take money from a supplier and then not try to sell the product. As a retailer, we bring new products in all the time into our stores and we are looking to drive sales. I always welcome new ideas and new products, and sometimes the best way to sell them is to get them out on offer or to place them in a particular place in-store. So sometimes, the best offer or the best product or the newest idea wins out.”

Personal Goals

Energetic, erudite and passionate, Frank Gleeson seems the perfect choice

The impact of the credit crunch on retailers has been “horrendous”.

People are paralysed: they’re saving too much, in the region of 16%. We need to get people back spending again. The big challenge is to stimulate demand through more retail sales for Chairman of Retail Ireland in these straitened times. But what would he personally like to achieve during his Chairmanship? “If someone was to say that during my Chairmanship, Retail Ireland became the most significant voice within Irish business, that is something I’d be very proud of,” he says. “If it was the most relevant voice within the business community, we’d be delighted.” So what does Retail Ireland do that’s different to other groups representing retailers, particularly grocery retailers? Is there a perception that Retail Ireland is just looking after the bigger retailers? “No, we’re not just the voice of big retailers. Wearing my Topaz hat, I represent over 200 independent retailers. Edel Clancy from Musgrave Group represents maybe 600 retailers on the Board. At the same time, you’ve got representatives from Tesco, B&Q and Clery’s. Our membership, while it may be skewed towards larger companies for historical reasons, can be representative of the total retail business, small and large. There is a place for other organisations too, like the CSNA, RGDATA, IBEC’s Small Business Unit, the Small Firms Association etc. My view is that participation with different organisations is very important: we all

need to be doing the same job, which is making it easier for our retailers to do business. No one association should dominate. My proposition is that Retail Ireland can do more and intends to do more, as an entity, to be representative of retail in Ireland. If people want to help us do that, be they individuals, companies or associations, talk to us.”

Chink of Light

And finally to the future: is there a chink of light at the end of this very dark recessionary tunnel? According to Gleeson, the biggest challenge ahead is the lack of consumer confidence: “People are paralysed: they’re saving too much, in the region of 16%. We need to get people back spending again. The big challenge is to stimulate demand through more retail sales.” Fixing the banking sector is perhaps the greatest single issue facing our economic recovery, he says. “We need a banking system that works, providing capital not just for businesses but for individuals to buy things. Economically, our consumer is paralysed: there is still money in the economy but people are afraid to spend, because they’re not sure whether there will be more job losses, what level of taxation we’re going to see, and they’re not sure what’s going to happen in terms of their own personal circumstances. Until we loosen those constraints, we’re going to see a flat or negative economy domestically. “Notwithstanding that, Irish people are very resilient and it is seen internationally that Ireland is very practical and is making the changes and cuts that are necessary for the medium to long term. That indicates that things will get better and we will come out of the recession stronger, hopefully. All of the analysts, Government and agencies want Ireland to be a success. Our biggest threat is ourselves: if we don’t start believing that we can succeed, we will fail.”

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The Year in Review

2011: The Year in


January THE bad weather was the single biggest influencing factor over shopping behaviour, during Christmas 2010. But while the underlying recession and financial constraints tempered consumer spending, the Arctic conditions were not all bad news for small retailers, as 65% of people shopped locally. ALCOHOL Action Ireland, a charity for alcohol-related issues, has called upon retailers and smaller offlicenses to support a campaign for the introduction of a minimum price on alcohol. Fiona Ryan, Director of Alcohol Action Ireland, told Retail News that such an initiative, amongst independent retailers, will create a level playing field with the multiples, which often use alcohol as a lossleader. THE Herlihy Group announces the acquisition of the Centra store in Millstreet, Cork, formally known as Dennehy’s Centra, which becomes the sixth store in the Herlihy Group. THE country’s main political parties are considering the plight of small to medium businesses in the run-up to the 2011 general election. Labour and Fine Gael have committed to the abolishment of upward-only rent reviews. Labour have also pledged to retain the existing Retail Planning Guidelines and maintain the retail planning cap. Fine Gael’s policy proposals also include a VAT reduction of at least 1.5% of the more labour intensive 13.5% VAT rate, as well as a strategy to reduce Local Authority rates. CONNACHT Gold Co-op announces the appointment of Helen Brophy as

General Manager of its Consumer Foods Business. SUPERVALU is to create 70 jobs with the opening of a new store in Mountmellick, County Laois, as part of its 2011 expansion programme. IBEC outlines its Jobs Manifesto for election 2011, calling for a reformation of the labour market and welfare systems. The report suggests numerous reforms, including a loan guarantee scheme for SMEs, a property tax to fund local authority services, and a reduction in commercial rates.

February GROCERY retailers are in financial limbo, as discussions continue over the latest Retail Grocery and Allied Trades Joint Labour Committee (JLC) pay increase. As of January 1, 2011, up to 100,000 workers employed in the retail grocery sector are entitled to a 1.25% pay increase.

FOOD and Drink Industry Ireland, the IBEC group that represents the food sector, calls for the introduction of a compulsory Code of Practice for the grocery sector, as part of its policy recommendations. They are also seeking a 20% improvement in cost competitiveness through reductions in energy, transport and waste costs. BOBBY Byrne’s XL store on O’Connell Avenue in Limerick wins the overall title of XL Store of the Year for the second year running. RETAILERS Against Smuggling, the representative group for Ireland’s tobacco retailers, has commended the work of the Revenue’s Customs Officials for the seizure of 6m cigarettes in Coolock, Dublin. NEW banking cards which allow consumers to make small purchases of up to €15 per item (up to a maximum of €45) by simply waving them in front of a terminal are expected to be introduced later this year. LONDIS are announced as sponsors of the hit UK TV series ‘Come Dine With Me’, which made its debut on TV3 in January. Pictured at the announcement are (l-r): Alan Hughes, TV3 presenter; Sue O’Grady, Londis; Deirdre O’Brien, TV3 Commercial; Sinead Desmond, TV3 presenter; Gillian Rigley, Londis; and TV3 presenters Conor Clear and Sybil Mulcahy.


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The Year in Review BARRY & Fitzwilliam is awarded the prestigious Cork Chamber of Commerce Company of the Year Award (SME Category for under 100 employees), which recognises strategic vision, innovation, performance, sales, marketing and sustainability. Michael Barry of Barry & Fitzwilliam (centre), is pictured accepting the Cork Company of the Year Award from Vodafone Ireland’s Business Director Anne O’Leary and Cork Chamber President Ger O’Mahoney.

TOPAZ and McDonald’s announce a combined investment of €6m in a new service station at the Cashel interchange on the M8 Dublin to Cork. The new services area, the first one to serve the M8, will create up to 100 jobs and will operate on a 24-hour basis from opening. Pictured at the announcement of the joint initiative are Eddie O’Brien, Chief Executive of Topaz, and John Atherton, Managing Director, McDonald’s Restaurants of Ireland.

CENTRA is set to add 17 new stores and over 500 jobs to its network in 2011, 200 of these being created in greenfield sites. This represents an investment of €23m by Centra’s retail partners, reflecting their confidence in the brand. Meanwhile, Centra sales top €1.4 billion in 2010. SPAR Ireland’s annual 5 Star Awards ceremony, run in association with the Excellence Ireland Quality Association, takes place in Lyrath Estate Hotel in Kilkenny. INDEPENDENT drinks distributor, Barry & Fitzwilliam is named one


of the winners of the Deloitte Best Managed Company Awards at a gala awards ceremony in The Burlington Hotel, Dublin. FUEL prices rise to over €1.50 per litre: the highest price ever charged for fuel in Ireland, adding to the pressure on forecourt retailers and distributors. TESCO is been given the all clear to open an off-licence in Dublin’s Temple Bar. A WHOPPING 344 stores receive a Centra Quality Award for 2011. NEW data from the Joint National Readership Survey (JNRS) reveals that over 84% of Irish adults - 2.96m people over the age of 15 - regularly read a daily or Sunday newspaper. This amounts to a weekly spend of €7m on national titles.


JUST days after Tesco announces a drop in price of 1,000 items, The Irish Times reveals that some of these products are more expensive than at the start of the year.

A NEW report from cross border body, InterTradeIreland, reveals that 82% of businesses believe costs will remain high over the next 12 months. A Retail Ireland survey also finds a large degree of pessimism amongst Irish retailers about the trading outlook. Around 56% of Retail Ireland’s respondents rate prospects for their business as “poor”, or “very poor”, from March to May. IBEC enters into a war of words with the Government over the reformation of the JLC system, calling upon the incoming government to adhere to structural reforms agreed with the IMF. THE Irish Tobacco Manufacturers Advisory Committee (ITMAC) are seeking higher fines for tobacco smuggling, with the news that the average fine for someone who was smuggling illegal tobacco was €782 for the last quarter of 2010.

CENTRA Stores in Tullamore, Dublin, and Ennis scoop the top awards at the Centra Store of the Year Awards ceremony. Scally’s Centra, Tullamore, is the overall winner of the contest, receiving the Gold Award. Courtney’s Centra, Fairview, came a close second, winning the Silver Award and Ryan’s Centra, Ennis, received the Bronze Award. Michael Morgan, Centra Sales Director, is pictured congratulating store owner Ben Scally, Scally’s Centra, Tullamore, and store manager Fiona Levy on winning the title of Centra Store of the Year 2011.

BUYLO, the new Irish discounter, has a hugely successful opening weekend at its newest store, located at the Skycourt Shopping Centre, Shannon, Co. Clare. A HIGH Court ruling finds that alcohol sellers in Ireland have no duty of care obligation for customers who drink to excess and injure themselves or others. The case, Mary Flanagan v. Mary Houlihan and Concepta and Seamus Kelly, is the first time the issue has been examined in Ireland. The court’s decision found that a customer who drinks excessively is at fault, instead of the publican/retailer who served them. Although the decision could have ramifications for many areas of the alcohol sector, off-licences will remain largely unaffected, since customers cannot drink on their premises. SUPERVALU announces the addition of 400 new jobs this year to its 15,000 workforce, with the opening|December 2011|Retail News|27

The Year in Review of two new stores and extending and refurbishing a further 34, in an investment programme worth in excess of €25m. The new stores will be located at Mountmellick, Co. Laois and Manorhamilton, Co Leitrim. THE National Dairy Council announces the appointment of Zoe Kavanagh as Chief Executive. RETAIL Excellence Ireland hail the Government’s plan to end upward-only rent reviews as a positive step for all grocery retailers. McINERNEY’S SuperValu, located in the heart of Loughrea, Co. Galway, is named SuperValu of the Year for 2011. Over 192 SuperValu stores throughout the Republic of Ireland were adjudicated by independent competition judge, Paul O’Sullivan, Director, Faculty of Business at Dublin Institute of Technology. These audits focused on customer care, store presentation, fresh food offering, product range, operational standards, store hygiene and local community involvement. Pictured are Clive Ryan, General Manager, Eircom, and Ciaran Levis, SuperValu Sales Director, presenting the SuperValu of the Year 2011 Award to store owner Michael McInerney and store manager, Clement Connolly, from SuperValu, Loughrea.

MAY ADM Londis plc is to add 12 new stores to its retailer network throughout 2011, supporting an estimated 240 jobs. The group also revealed that, despite passing significant price cuts to its retail members, ADM Londis has remained profitable throughout the recession, with pre-tax profits for 2010 standing at €1.1m, compared with €1.7m in 2009 on wholesale turnover of €237m. With like for like sales down 7%, group retail member sales totalled just under €500m for 2010.

IRELAND’S illegal tobacco trade has shrunk for the first time in six years, according to JTI Ireland’s latest illicit tobacco trade review.

tourist-related ventures. However, retail groups are less impressed with the Government’s desire to reform and not abolish the JLC structure.

SUPERVALU present Excellence Ireland Hygiene & Food Safety Certificates to a record 189 SuperValu retailers from all over the country, who completed the SuperValu National Hygiene & Food Safety programme accredited by EIQA. Year-on-year these entrepreneurial food retailers continue to push out the boundaries of excellence, with no fewer than 189 stores receiving a SuperValu Quality Award for 2011.

Retail News reveals that proposed schemes to help fund small businesses, as part of the Government’s jobs initiative, are unlikely to see the light of day until the end of the year, including the introduction of an SME loan scheme and a micro-finance fund, providing small loans for start-up businesses. RUMOURS persist that Superquinn is up for sale, after an offer from a major group, presumed to be Musgrave, falls through. THE regulatory codes of practice governing alcohol promotion and marketing in Ireland are amongst the most effective in the world, according to the Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland (ABFI).

BUYLO witnesses record sales at its seventh store opening located at the Royal Liver Retail Park, Kylemore Road, Dublin 12.

DEEP discounting has become the norm rather than the exception on supermarket and c-store shelves across the country, with both branded and own label goods engaging in BOGOFs and other special offers in order to entice cash-poor consumers, according to David Berry, Commercial Director at Kantar Worldpanel.

MUSGRAVE Group announce their annual results. The Group achieved €4.4 billion in sales during 2010, a 3% drop on 2009. Its €72m profit before tax, however, marked a 3% increase. The company also cleared its start of year debt of €59m to close the year with net cash of €21m. TESCO Ireland reports a 5% increase in sales, amounting to €3 billion, in the year to the end of February, 2011. PAYZONE is to sponsor the publication of RGDATA’s 2011 report on the economic and financial significance of independent local retailers.

THE National Lottery’s annual results are released. It raised €243.7m for good causes in 2010. Total sales were €772m, down 5% in a challenging retail environment. LUSK-based company, Country Crest wins the Agriculture, Food & Drink Award at the national final of the Ulster Bank Business Achievers Awards. REACTION to the Government’s jobs initiative is mixed. Industry broadly welcomed the Government’s decision to halve the lower rate of PSRI, on jobs that pay up to €356 a week, and to reduce VAT (from 13.5% to 9%) on

THE annual XL retailer forums take place in three locations across the country, where more than 240 store owners, management and staff from the 172 XL stores nationwide celebrated being part of Ireland’s fastest growing symbol group. Managing Director BWG Foods, Willie O’Byrne, is pictured addressing the forums.

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The Year in Review THE latest grocery market figures from Kantar Worldpanel in Ireland, for the 12 weeks ending 15 May 2011, show Dunnes Stores has increased its market share for the first time since August 2009. AN E-Coli outbreak in Germany causes huge concern across Europe.

JUNE Musgrave has signed a new 2½ year deal with Oliver Carty Limited to supply 100% Irish bacon and ham for its SuperValu and Centra network of stores. THE Duffy/Walsh report into the JLC regulatory system concludes that lowering the JLC rates to the level of the minimum wage would not effect employment. THE results of the latest Behaviour & Attitudes’ Business Confidence Survey indicate poor results for the first quarter of 2011, when compared with an equivalent period last year. However, Irish Business leaders are more optimistic about the second quarter of 2011, with almost equal proportions expecting business activity to be higher, the same or lower when compared with the equivalent period last year. SPAR Ireland reports sales of €1.17 billion for 2010. THE new GS1 DataBar is smaller than its predecessor, and yet can contain more useful information, such as ‘bestbefore’ dates, place of origin, coupon processing etc.

BWG Foods, operators of the SPAR, EUROSPAR, MACE and XL brands, stage their first ever Trade Show in the Convention Centre, Dublin, generating sales in excess of €20m between retailers and suppliers. Over 600 BWG Foods’ retailers from across Ireland gathered at the venue, taking the opportunity to engage directly with 120 local and international suppliers, attending what was not only a first for the company, but for the industry overall. Leo Crawford, Group Chief Executive BWG Group, is pictured (left), with Willie O’Byrne, Managing Director, BWG Foods; and Brian Doyle, General Manager, Donnelly Fruit and Veg.

GALA opens its largest store, with the official opening of Gala Cahersiveen’s regenerated 10,000 square feet site. MUSGRAVE Group plc reaches an agreement to purchase the Superquinn business, subject to approval by the Competition Authority.

THE tobacco industry is up in arms over new European Commission (EC) proposals to introduce plain cigarette packaging, removing logos, designs and graphics.

TESCO Ireland announce the recruitment of 35 new small local suppliers at a Tesco Irish Food Expo in Dublin. The event will see the new suppliers produce combined sales with Tesco of over €3m. Pictured at the Tesco Irish Food Expo are (l-r): Deirdre Collins, Dee’s Whole Foods, Cork; Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine, Simon Coveney TD; Tony Keohane, CEO, Tesco Ireland; and Ann Rudden, Áine Handmade Chocolate, Cavan.

RETAILERS’ representatives are pushing for the Government’s proposed Code of Practice to include a set of rules for local authorities and semistate agencies, as well as suppliers to the trade, such as telecommunications, newspaper, and toll charge providers. NEW research released by SuperValu reveals the impact of the economic downturn on household expenditure and shopping habits. More than four in five consumers have reduced their household expenditure, with families impacted more than any other consumer segment.

JULY THE JLC system is deemed unconstitutional by the High Court, following a case taken by the Quick Service Food Alliance. Retailers who were previously under investigation for not paying JLC rates have had their charges dropped. However, retailers should respect existing contracts. A worker who has been receiving a JLC payment has a contract with their employer, whether written or implied contract, and is still entitled to that payment.

GOVERNMENT proposals to introduce a new tax on packaging receive an angry response from business representatives, who label it a double taxation. “As it stands, we already exceed the EU recycling targets. It’s most unusual that we’re going to face the chance of double taxation at a time when we’re not just meeting but exceeding these targets,” argues argued Paul Kelly, Director of Food & Drink Industry Ireland (FDII).

MINISTER for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD is to scrap the board of the National Consumer Agency when it is merged with the Competition Authority, after the Government gave the go-ahead to the drafting of the Consumer and Competition Bill.

THE Revenue Commissioners launch a new strategy on combating the illicit tobacco trade, which will “target and confront those who do not comply” with their obligations under tax and duty regulations. The new strategy for tackling the illicit trade is multifaceted and is broken down under various strategic headings, including reducing demand for contraband|December 2011|Retail News|29

The Year in Review tobacco through educating the public on the negative aspects of contraband (i.e. tax loss, criminality and increased health risks) and optimised media coverage for prosecutions, significant seizures and enforcement initiatives. They also plan to maintain compliance of the legitimate trade by ensuring existing controls continue to be efficient and effective and contribute to fair trading conditions for all legitimate traders, while minimising the compliance burden.

August DUBLIN District Court rejects an Office of Tobacco Control (OTC) attempt to prosecute cigarette manufacture PJ Carroll. The OTC had accused the manufacturer of breaching the tobacco sponsorship ban by allegedly encouraging shop staff to promote one of its cigarette brands. The company was alleged to have breached the ban due to a Pocket-a-Packet programme, whereby retailers confirmed the availability of Pall Mall cigarettes to adults who had already asked to purchase tobacco products. The ruling suggests that there is nothing to stop a retailer from having a factual conversation with an adult smoker who intends to purchase smoking products.

SUPERVALU is the first supermarket in Ireland to adopt the new Responsible Irish Fish (RIF) Label, furthering its support for the Irish fishing industry. The new label for fish and shellfish has been introduced to ensure Irish fishermen can differentiate their products as 100% Irish in the marketplace, with all seafood bearing the RIF logo fully traceable back to an Irish vessel. MAXOL sets up a Quality Assurance Scheme called ‘Fuels You Can Trust’, which is aimed at protecting Irish motorists from the hazards of purchasing illegal or tampered diesel fuel. POTATO.IE is a new consumer website which has been launched by the Irish Potato Federation in association with Bord Bia.

SEPTEMBER THE inaugural Irish Business Teamwork Awards take place at Carton House, Maynooth, Co. Kildare. This unique team-building event, the brainchild of Jim Barry, Managing Director, Barry Group, combined outdoor challenges and indoor teambuilding activities, with all proceeds from the event donated to the Irish Grocer’s Benevolent Fund (IGBF).

A NEW shopping survey from Carat Ireland reveals that 65% of women make grocery shopping decisions, compared to 33% of men. Carat’s summer survey also reveals a number of trends regarding in-store advertising. 68% of shoppers said that promotional end-of-aisle displays, on-shelf ads and free samples, were among the most noticeable formats of in-store advertising. AN increasing amount of retailers are declining to process consumer credit card payments under certain amounts, due to the costs in involved in processing the transactions. VALEO Foods are to buy Jacob Fruitfield Group, in a deal expected to create a combined business with €300m annual turnover and a workforce of 500. MINISTER for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, comes under fire from retailers for reforming and not scrapping the JLC system, with Retail Ireland describing the Government decision as a missed opportunity to create jobs in the sector. DUNNES Stores is in the news after it begins charging customers for using fruit and vegetable bags to carry other groceries. The supermarket has imposed a 22c charge per bag in the Rathmines branch of its supermarket chain.

MUSGRAVE Wholesale Partners retail convenience brand, Daybreak, continues to attract new retailers into the group, with 16 new stores joining the group across the country to date, including stores in Cork, Meath, Tipperary, Kildare, Mayo, Clare, Roscommon and Dublin. LETTERKENNY Value Centre, Co. Donegal’s only cash and carry business, officially opens its new extension. Owners, BWG Foods, made a significant investment in the expansion and complete refurbishment of the premises, which has increased in size by 8,000 square metres. CENTRA are to become the first Irish retailer to embrace contactless payments, with nearly 1m new contactless enabled Visa Debit cards due to be issued to Irish consumers from late 2011. The ‘contactless’ technology will allow customers to purchase items of €15 or under in less than a second, by simply waving their card in front of the card terminal to make payment.

has created 70 new jobs within the local community.

MUSGRAVE Retail Partners Ireland launches its Diploma in Fresh Food Management, which is being run in conjunction with the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT). SUPERVALU opens a new store at Mountmellick, County Laois. The 1,486 square metre store, owned by SuperValu retailer Emmett McConville, cost €5.5m to develop and

2010 saw Ireland once again exceed its 2011 EU used packaging recycling target by recycling and recovering over 626,000 tonnes or 65% of all glass, cardboard, plastic, metal and wood packaging, according to figures released by packaging recycling scheme Repak, which also reported a drop in the overall amount of used packaging recovered/recycled of 2.8% and a 6.4% drop in Repak revenues, reflecting a more difficult economic environment for members and consumers. MINISTER for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton TD has increased the number of businesses exempt from the requirement to hire external auditors to the maximum level permitted under EU law, a move that is expected to save Irish SMEs up to €5m per year. The Minister also announces that the Government has approved his

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The Year in Review proposal to begin a process which will ensure that a reduction of 25% in the red tape imposed by Government on business can be achieved by the end of 2012, resulting in savings of €500m to Irish businesses. SUPERVALU is to invest €90m in delivering price savings to Irish shoppers, reducing the price of the average weekly SuperValu shopping basket from €132 to €102, a saving of €30. The investment will consist of a significant range of price cuts right across the store, increased promotions and a half price Back-to-School offer. SHOP 2011 takes place at the RDS Simmonscourt, Dublin at the end of September, proving a tremendous success, showcasing the best of Irish products from over 140 exhibitors over the course of the three-day event. New features this year include as the Knowledge Sharing Village and the French Pavilion.

TOPAZ’ state-of-the-art service station in Cashel, Co. Tipperary, beat off competition from some of the world’s latest and most innovative convenience store formats to win the Insight NACS International Convenience Retailer of the Year Award 2011. Pictured at the presentation of the Insight NACS 2011 International Convenience Retailer of the Year Award are (l-r): Mike Laney, Head of Convenience for Imperial Tobacco, award sponsors; Dan Munford, MD, Insights Research; Hank Armour, President of NACS; Eddie O’Brien, CEO, Topaz; Paul Candon, Marketing and Corporate Services Director, Topaz; and Frank Gleeson, Retail Director, Topaz.

OCTOBER MUSGRAVE relaunches its MarketPlace Cash and Carry outlet in Limerick, following an investment of €1m as part of a wider redevelopment programme. The 60,000 square feet

outlet, the largest cash & carry in the south west of Ireland, has has been transformed with an innovative, customer-friendly layout that has seen the introduction of exciting new product ranges, with a particular emphasis on chilled and frozen products, reflective of trends within the industry.

NEW legislation, allowing tenants to renegotiate upward-only rent reviews, is due to be published before the end of the year. Under the legislation, the tenant and landlord must try and come to a consensus within 28 days. If negotiations are not settled during this time frame, a mediator gets involved for a further 28 days. After this period, if the mediator can not find a solution, the tenant may apply to the Circuit Court. RÓISÍN Shortall TD, Minister for State at the Department of Health, calls for a ban on the below cost selling of alcohol.

ADM Londis’ €5m, five-year strategy to shift to ‘e-Retailing’ results in the Group investing in iPads for every retailer, which will enable them to access Londis’ unique software capabilities and cloudbased infrastructure through one portable device. The move will dramatically transform the operation and management of shops across the country, putting the entire store operation at the retailer’s fingertips, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, from anywhere in the world.

IRELAND is set to export recordsetting levels of food and drink in 2011. A Bord Bia survey suggests that exports are expected to reach a new high of €8.9bn in 2011, an increase of more than 12%, or almost €1bn, on 2010 levels. MUSGRAVE Group is recognised as the best Member Award at this year’s Repak Recycling Awards. Other winners include McInerney’s SuperValu in Loughrea, Co. Galway, which took the Repak Best Practice Award for Independent Retailers.

200 guests from the food and agri-food sectors across the capital attend the inaugural meeting of the Dublin Food Forum, hosted by Country Crest at their headquarters in Lusk, Co. Dublin, ORGANISATIONS representing small businesses and banks are at loggerheads over access to credit. Retailer groups claim financial institutions are rejecting loan requests, while banks say there is a lack of demand. Lending to SME’s has fallen by 10% in the 12 months to June, according to new figures from the Central Bank.

ISOLDE Goggin (pictured above) is named as the new Chairperson of the Competition Authority.

THE Competition Authority approves the sale of Superquinn to Musgrave group, in the biggest acquisition to hit the retail market in Ireland in years. “The purchase of Superquinn supports our growth agenda and will sustain our competitiveness,” said Musgrave Group CEO, Chris Martin. “We will apply our considerable expertise to help stabilise a business that has been greatly challenged by the changes in the marketplace in recent years. In a declining market where consumers are spending less and continuously looking for value, Superquinn has struggled to retain market share. Working with the Superquinn team, we will tackle these considerable challenges to stabilise the business and develop it for the future.”|December 2011|Retail News|31

The Year in Review MARS Chocolate and Fairtrade International announce a new agreement to introduce the first Fairtrade labelled Mars product and to work together to enable farmers to have sustainable livelihoods through and substantially increased productivity. The first Mars product to carry the Fairtrade Mark will be Maltesers, to appear in stores in 2012 in Ireland and the UK. MORE than 200 retailers attend the Gala Annual Conference, where the group unveils plans to go the ‘extra mile’ for retailers and to help Gala retailers go the ‘extra mile’ in attracting new customers and adding value in-store.

NOVEMBER MINISTER for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton TD, explains to Retail News how the JLC system is being overhauled: “The legislation currently being drafted will facilitate radical overhaul of the JLC system, so

as to make it fairer and more responsive to changing economic circumstances and labour market conditions.”

April of next year, with Mike Byrne taking up his new role in GS1 Ireland in early 2012 after 10 years in ComReg.

NEW EU legislation, covering retailer and supplier relations, could supersede the proposed Irish Code of Practice, according to Retail Ireland.

SUPERVALU’s own brand is to be rolled out to Londis and Budgens stores in the UK.

ECR Ireland’s Category Management Conference takes place under the theme, ‘The Path to Purchase’. SUPERVALU is to open a new store in Dun Laoghaire Shopping Centre to become the new supermarket anchor for the facility. The store will begin recruitment locally for 70 new jobs, with the new supermarket expected to open before Christmas EUROSPAR Kilkenny launches its new look store after BWG Foods and supermarket owners, the McCarthy family, made a €600,000 investment in upgrading the premises. Developments at the wholly Irish-owned store include a 5,000 square feet extension and total re-vamp of the existing floor space. CENTRA develops an exciting new free iPhone and Android App which offers delicious recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

THE Maxol Group and BWG Foods, operators of the MACE brand, agree to extend their forecourt partnership for another five years. The value of the contract is €225m and it will result in the launch and roll out of a new Maxol MACE dual forecourt brand, which will combine the widespread Maxol company-owned service station network with the expertise and high profile that comes with the MACE convenience store offering. At the heart of this new agreement is the plan to co-brand the c-stores on Maxol forecourts under the Maxol MACE banner. The first example of this new approach has just been launched at Maxol’s recently redeveloped service station in Wilton, Cork. Pictured at the new Maxol MACE dual brand launch are from left: Brian Donaldson, General Manager, Marketing & Retail, The Maxol Group; Leo Crawford, CEO BWG Foods

MUSGRAVE Group plc announces the establishment of a new operating division, Musgrave Operating Partners Ireland, which will run the Superquinn business and will be headed up by Tim Kenny, previously Group Finance and Business Development Director at Musgrave Group, who takes on the role of Managing Director of Musgrave Operating Partners Ireland. ICELAND opens new 8,000 square feet store in Coolock, Dublin.

DECEMBER RETAILERS respond in dismay to Minister for Finance Michael Noonan’s announcements for Budget 2012, believing that export businesses were prioritised in the budget, while domestic retail was left without much hope. The budget includes a rise of VAT to 23% and tax hikes on fuel and cigarettes.

FOR the first time ever, there will be a SPAR store on the set of Ireland’s most popular home-grown soap, Fair City, following a sponsorship announcement by RTÉ Television and BWG Foods. The agreement, which is part of an overall marketing investment of €900,000 over the next three years, sees Christy Phelan’s corner shop transformed into a state-of-the-art SPAR store. ILLEGAL diesel laundering is costing the State at least €150m in lost revenue every year, according to Retail Ireland, who estimate that at least 12% of all diesel sold in Ireland is illegal. Retail Ireland put forward a submission to Government, making a number of recommendations to tackle the issue.

IRELAND’S Retail Planning Guidelines are in jeopardy after the Government publishes new draft guidelines proposing their repeal. Retail groups, including RGDATA, widely condemn the move. RGDATA Director General, Tara Buckley (pictured above) warns that changes “may lead to local monopolies, less choice and higher prices”.

ACCESS to credit for small businesses could become easier after the Government launch the Standardised SME Lending Application Form, for use in Allied Irish Banks and Bank of Ireland.

SEVEN food and beverage companies are awarded accolades in the SuperValu Irish Food Producers 2011, in association with Enterprise Ireland.

GS1 Ireland announces the appointment of Mike Byrne as CEO Designate. The current CEO of GS1 Ireland, Jim Bracken, will retire in

IRISH employment levels will be back at pre-crisis levels by 2016, according to a new report published by IBEC and PwC, at IBEC’s flagship CEO Conference in Dublin.

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Products of the Year

The Best of 2011

Retail News selects its favourite new product launches from 2011. INNOVATION is a word that’s frequently bandied about in the FMCG sector, but despite the amount of lip-service paid to it, being truly innovative is often the most elusive of tasks. However, the rewards are huge. “Shoppers love new products and will try new products. Even during the course of the recession, we have seen consumers who are willing to try new things, so new brands have appeared on the market and have done reasonably well.” These were the words of David Berry, Commercial Director of Kantar Worldpanel, in these very pages in May 2011. New product development often struggles in a recession, but it is the very lifeblood of the FMCG market, with consumers constantly seeking out new products, new tastes and new retail experiences. Innovation and NPD are crucial in the grocery sector. With this in mind, Retail News highlights some of its favourite new products and innovations from 2011.

Heinz Squeeze & Stir

John Player Gold

Vogue Perle

Panadol Woman

IN September 2011, Heinz entered the instant soup category with a revolutionary, brand new soup in a cup format: Heinz Squeeze & Stir. Made from concentrated purée, each variety (Cream of Tomato, Minestrone, Cream of Tomato & Basil and Mediterranean Vegetable) contains ‘1 of your 5 a day’ and delivers outstandingly in terms of taste, consistency and goodness credentials. Available in handy, lightweight squeezable sachets. Heinz Squeeze and Stir continues to perform strongly, having secured early retailer interest, subsequent extensive listings and integrated media and sampling consumer support. Q1 2012 will see further trade and integrated consumer support for this hugely innovative range.

SEPTEMBER saw Ireland’s oldest tobacco company, PJ Carroll, launching Vogue Perle, the new affordable premium cigarette from the House of Vogue. Vogue Perle comes in a premium pack with elegant features designed in Paris and is slightly smaller than normal cigarette packs. The demi-slim cigarette is slightly longer and thinner than a normal king size cigarette, but delivers the same satisfying smoking experience. Launched nationally across all retail channels in two variants, Bronze and Menthe, both in a 7mg smooth format, Vogue Perle has a competitive RRP to offer quality at an affordable price point.

IN APRIL, John Player launched John Player Gold, the new smooth cigarette offering within the John Player family. The trend of consumers moving towards the smoother sector continues growing, with currently 42% of the cigarette market in this sector. John Player Gold is a credible choice for consumers who choose to move down in strength. The pack is unmistakably a ‘smoother’ brand with its white tones, clean lines and sophisticated look. It also provides a tactile element with the texture adding another element so important to a brand of today, while building upon the strong heritage and success of the John Player brand. John Player Gold is available in both King Size and 100mm length.

PANADOL Woman, from GlaxoSmithKline, is the latest introduction to the Panadol range, Ireland’s number one pain relieving brand (Source: ACNielsen, Adult Analgesics, July 2011). Specially indicated to relieve period pain, each film-coated Panadol Woman tablet contains 500mg paracetamol & 65mg caffeine. Panadol Woman is clinically proven to provide more effective period pain relief than standard paracetamol alone. Launched in September, Panadol Woman is manufactured in Panadol’s Dungarvan plant, and comes in a pink Compack pack to give it stand-out on shelf.|December 2011|Retail News|33

Products of the Year Kenco Millicano

Maryland Big & Chunky Cookies

Marlboro Gold Touch

Kit Kat Pop Choc

McCain’s New Brand Identity

Benson & Hedges Silver Slide

2011 saw Kenco unveil one of their biggest product innovations in Ireland, Kenco Millicano, their first ever ‘Wholebean Instant Coffee’ and the closest thing to proper coffee in an instant. New Kenco Millicano is a clever combination of instant coffee and finely-milled coffee beans. Made from high quality Arabica beans, Millicano delivers a smooth, full-bodied, velvety flavour and rich aroma. Like the rest of the Kenco range, all of the beans bought for Kenco Millicano are 100% sourced from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms – which means every sip you take helps coffee-growing communities and protects the environment.

MARLBORO Gold Touch is an innovative new dimension in smoking: slightly thinner than Marlboro Gold Original, it offers a taste that is refined and smooth. Marlboro Gold Touch is a high quality cigarette that is slimmer to the touch than conventional cigarettes and is now available in Cash & Carry or directly through John Player Ltd. The brand is very competitively positioned, and Marlboro Gold Touch comes in a modern, compact box that fits easily into a pocket or handbag.

TO build on the success of the McCain brand this year, McCain launched an eye-catching new pack design with a distinctive new brand identity and ranging structure across its entire frozen potato range. This was supported with a new heavyweight TV advertising campaign, which is also set to run right through 2012. Holding firmly to the number one position amongst Irish consumers, McCain HomeChips, formerly known as McCain HomeFries, is a real family favourite and a must-stock product, while other big hits include McCain Roast Potatoes, Croquettes and Wedges. This year saw McCain rebrand their roasts, launching McCain Roast Potatoes, formerly known as McCain Home Roasts.

MARYLAND made a big (and chunky) impact on the biscuit category this year, with the launch of Maryland Big & Chunky Cookies, which came out on top in consumer preference testing (conducted by JRA 2010). The Maryland Big & Chunky range comprises of four variants: Choc Chunk & Hazelnut Crunch, Choc Chunk & Crunchy Flapjack, Milk & Dark Choc Chunk and White Choc Chunk Brownie (all 200g). “The Maryland Big & Chunky range offers consumers another opportunity to enjoy a treat at home, offering more choice and broadening the appeal of one of Ireland’s bestloved cookies,” says Eddie Carr, Business Account Manager (Ireland), Burton’s Biscuit Company.

KIT KAT Pop Choc was launched in a sharing bag in March 2011, to tremendous success. Indeed, so popular was the new product that September saw bitesize Kit Kat available in a 40g impulse bag. Kit Kat Pop Choc are delicious bite-size pieces of famous Kit Kat wafer, coated in milk chocolate and containing no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives. “The impulse bag is a natural move for the brand, enabling consumers to enjoy Kit Kat Pop Choc in a convenient impulse pack,” explains Maria McKenna, Nestlé Ireland’s Confectionery Manager.

BENSON & Hedges Silver Slide is now Ireland’s fastest growing cigarette brand (Source: ACNielsen, Extended Scantrack, Cigarette Volume Share, YTD, WE 4th Sept 2011). The iconic Benson & Hedges house offers a new smoking experience for existing adult smokers with its unique slide pack, while the new Music Edition Packs capture an array of different music genres. To ensure you have adequate stock, talk to your local JTI Trade Marketer, visit your local Cash & Carry or place an order on 01 4040200.

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Breakfast Time Convenience and health are driving new product development in the breakfast market.

Early Risers It is a well-documented fact that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and yet 32% of people in Ireland regularly skip breakfast, according to a recent study into breakfast behaviour by Kraft Foods Ireland. While this may be bad news for that almost 1.4m people, it also means two things for retailers: 68% of Irish people eat breakfast regularly; and there is massive scope to increase the market by educating consumers about the benefits of a healthy breakfast. Indeed, the Kraft Foods survey found that 58% of people in Ireland admit to feeling happier and more energetic when they do eat breakfast. It has been proven in many studies that those who eat breakfast have a lower body mass index (BMI) than those who skip breakfast. “Nutritionists recognise breakfast as one of the most important meals of the day and people who skip breakfast find it much harder to get their recommended daily amounts

of iron and other vitamins,” noted consultant dietician Sarah Keogh. “People who eat breakfast have better concentration levels and find it easier to maintain a healthy weight. Any convenient, portion controlled and specially designed breakfast alternative that makes it easier for more of us to eat a balanced breakfast more often can only be a good thing.” 37% of people say that they skip breakfast because they have no time and have too many other things to do in the morning, which, alongside not being able to face food at that time

of day or not being hungry (38%), is the biggest reason people give for not having breakfast. One third of skippers choose to stay in bed longer (29%) and a quarter are spending time on their appearance each morning instead of having breakfast When it comes to children, however, 96% of Irish kids eat breakfast, according to Professor Albert Flynn, Irish Universities Nutrition Alliance, IUNA, who describes breakfast as “a protection against what is happening elsewhere in the day”.

Breakfast Facts • People who eat breakfast consume more essential nutrients, tend to be slimmer and have better concentration than those who skip breakfast; • The nutrients, vitamins and minerals missed at breakfast are often not made up later in the day; • Ireland has the highest consumption of breakfast cereals per capita in the world, at 7.7kg in 2010 (Source: Euromonitor).


* Belvita Breakfast regularly releases carbohydrates over 4 hours to keep you going all morning as part of a balanced breakfast to include a piece of fruit and a serving of dairy *Kantar Data to 12 w/e 17th April 2011 OV5467


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Breakfast Time Belvita Breakfast

Belvita Breakfast is a revolutionary range of biscuits from Kraft Foods and the only biscuit that has been specially designed for breakfast. Belvita Breakfast biscuits are a tasty and convenient breakfast alternative, designed with busy mornings in mind: made with wholegrains, rich in cereals, a source of fibre, and containing a selection of important vitamins and minerals. When eaten as part of a balanced breakfast, the biscuits are scientifically proven to regularly release carbohydrates over four hours to keep you going all morning (proven in five clinical trials when eaten as part of a balanced breakfast, including a portion of fruit and a serving of dairy).

The Belvita brand has been supported in 2011 with TV advertising, in-store sampling and price promotions to drive brand awareness and trial. The plan for 2012 will be to build on the brand’s success to date, introducing new products and marketing support to enhance the range offering. Recently launched, Belvita Yogurt Crunch is a new format with a delicious creamy live yogurt filling, adding a new taste and texture to the existing range of

Belvita Breakfast biscuits to give consumers increased choice. Yogurt Crunch will be further supported in 2012 with Belvita Breakfast biscuits are a tasty and convenient breakfast alternative designed with busy mornings in mind: made with wholegrains, rich in cereals, a source of fibre, and containing a selection of important vitamins and minerals.

Since the initial launch of Belvita in 2010, two additional variants have been added to the core range: Belvita Honey & Nuts and Belvita Crunchy Oats.

Belvita Yogurt Crunch is a new format with a delicious creamy live yogurt filling, adding a new taste and texture to the existing range of Belvita Breakfast biscuits.

advertising and sampling to drive trial and awareness of the new format.

The Flahavan’s Quick Oats range, including new Multi-Seed Porridge, meets the evolving needs of consumers for a healthy breakfast.

an additional tasty and healthy boost to breakfast time. The new seeded range is a source of Omega 3 fatty acids, protein and fibre. Flahavan’s Multi-Seed Porridge contains no added salt, sugar or artificial flavourings, colourings or preservatives and is completely natural. Flahavan’s Quick Oats Multi-Seed Sachets (10 x 40g) and Quick Oats Multi-Seed Portable Porridge Pots, which come in a 40g


Flahavans, Ireland’s favourite porridge oat company, continue to drive development in the oats category, with their focus on quality and innovation. Flahavan’s recently launched a delicious new Multi-Seed Porridge as part of their Quick Oats range, to meet the evolving needs of consumers for a healthy breakfast. The Multi-Seed range is available in sachet, portable porridge pot and bag formats and combines Flahavan’s Porridge Oats with Sunflower, Flax, Pumpkin and Hemp seeds to provide

Flahavan’s new Multi-Seed range is available in sachet, portable porridge pot and bag formats and combines Flahavan’s Porridge Oats with Sunflower, Flax, Pumpkin and Hemp seeds.

Retail News|December 2011||37

Breakfast Time serving, have a crunchy texture that is simply delicious. Simple preparation in just three-easy steps helps make a breakfast packed full of taste and goodness. Flahavan’s Quick Oat Sachets, which come with a reusable liquid measure, are ready in just two minutes, while Flahavan’s MultiSeed Pot can be made by simply microwaving or adding boiling water and is ready in just 90 seconds. The cool-to-the-touch exterior makes the Multi-Seed pot a truly portable product, ideal to enjoy in the office or home. These single serving dual microwavable and hot water options provide a quick and nutritious breakfast, which releases energy in the body throughout mornings. “The range of Flahavan’s MultiSeed Porridge is a welcome addition for porridge users because they see the addition of seeds to Flahavan’s oats as having an interesting double health benefit,” states John Noonan, Sales & Marketing Director. “The new range is an exciting development for us as it introduces a new segment, creating more interest in a growing hot oats category.” Brand manager Dolores Whelan comments further: “The launch of the newest member of the Flahavan’s Quick Oats porridge family, MultiSeed, will see the start of a number of high-impact, consumer focused activities, including national radio promotions and consumer engagement activities. Each element of the campaign will communicate the strength of the Irish-ness of the brand, as well as the value and health propositions of porridge. The company will also drive its on-line presence through its Facebook page and the launch of its new website.” Flahavan’s is Ireland’s favourite porridge and has a loyal Irish customer base, with over three million servings of Flahavan’s consumed nationwide each week.


Kellogg’s has signalled a major shakeup of its children’s cereals with the introduction of Kellogg’s Mini Max – its first new kids’ cereal since Kellogg’s Honey Loops launched more than 20 years ago. Available in Original and Chocolate flavours, Kellogg’s Mini Max are tiny wholegrain wheat parcels with a smooth texture specifically designed for children. Kellogg’s believes the cereal which is currently rolling out in stores, has the potential to become one of the leading kids’ cereal brands. Mini Max is made from wholegrain, is high in fibre, low in salt, low in saturated fat and a source of D and B vitamins and iron. According to Emer Barry, Kids and Family Brand Manager, Kellogg’s: “The launch of Mini Max presents our retail customers with an opportunity to grow the category. It’s about

Boyne Valley Honey has been available to Irish consumers for almost 50 years and is the most popular brand of honey in Ireland.

Available in Original and Chocolate flavours, new Kellogg’s Mini Max are tiny wholegrain wheat parcels with a smooth texture specifically designed for children.

ensuring the breakfast cereal category, continues to grow by offering new food to meet the changing needs of shopper and consumer.”

Boyne Valley Honey

Boyne Valley Honey has been available to Irish consumers for almost 50 years and is the most popular brand of honey in Ireland. Boyne Valley Honey is 100% pure and natural. It is available in a range of formats, from the 250g Bizzy Bee kid’s squeezy right up to the 907g jar. The 250g squeezy has been specifically developed with young

consumers in mind and features the ‘Bizzy Bee’ character. The Boyne Valley Manuka Honey range includes Boyne Valley Manuka Active 10+ and Boyne Valley Manuka Active 7+. Manuka Honey is one of the key drivers of growth in the honey category, with consumers recognising the various health benefits.

Bonne Maman

Bonne Maman, the premium French jam from Boyne Valley Group, has full distribution throughout Ireland and has seen a very impressive 25% growth year to date. For many years, Bonne Maman has been the uncontested leader in its market, with a continuing strategy to sustain growing consumer demand. Bonne Maman, with its unique design and ‘home made’ image, really stands out in-store and appears very attractive to the consumer. Irish consumers are increasingly trading up to premium offerings in jam with an emphasis on quality and Bonne Maman jams boast a minimum of 50% whole fruit per 100g of jam product.

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Breakfast Time in Ireland; they contain no preservatives, no artificial colours, and no added salt and provide a source of fibre. For more information, contact Kelkin on (01) 4600400.

Johnston Mooney & O’Brien

Bonne Maman, the premium French jam from Boyne Valley Group, has full distribution throughout Ireland and has seen a very impressive 25% growth year to date.

Bonne Maman is available in strawberry, apricot, blackcurrant, blackberry, raspberry, peach, damson plum, berries and cherries, wild blueberry, orange marmalade and mandarin marmalade flavours. Bonne Maman Jams are 100% natural and are free from preservatives, flavouring and colouring. Bonne Maman’s success will continue into 2012 with a heavyweight national promotional campaign.

Ploughing Championships 2011. Kelkin’s Granola Bars were specially designed with quality, health and value for money in mind and have been very well received by consumers to date.

Johnston Mooney & O’Brien have been feeding Irish families for centuries. With such a strong heritage, Johnston Mooney & O’Brien have introduced a wide family of variants to the portfolio over the years, offering consumers the choice of how best to start their day. Johnston Mooney & O’Brien’s Toastie is Ireland’s number one toast bread, according to the company, and is enjoyed daily in thousands of homes across Ireland. Containing closed top slices, perfect for toasting,


Kelkin’s Irish-made Oat Granola Cereal range now claims leadership of the granola cereal sector in the Republic of Ireland. The success of this range offered Kelkin a perfect platform to extend into the cereal bar market, worth €24m (Source: ACNielsen, November 2011), with their new granola bar range. Kelkin’s innovative, Irish-made Granola Bar range was launched at the biggest landmark event in Irish calendars - The National

The cereal bar range comes in six-packs and single bar offerings in three variants: Kelkin Triple Berry (RSP €3.29 or 69c), Fruit & Nut (RSP €3.29 or 69c), and Oat & Honey (RSP €2.99 or 69c). The bars are handmade

Kelkin’s innovative, Irish-made Granola Bar range was specially designed with quality, health and value for money in mind and has been very well received by consumers to date.

Johnston Mooney & O’Brien’s Toastie is enjoyed daily in thousands of homes across Ireland: one of Ireland’s favourite breakfast essentials.

and supported this year with a heavyweight campaign including TV, radio, outdoor and press, Toastie continues to be one of Ireland’s favourite breakfast essentials. As many of us know, encouraging kids to eat brown bread can be a difficult task. Johnston Mooney & O’Brien’s healthy nutritious Goodness of Both is the answer! Soft smooth white with all the goodness of wholemeal means a sandwich made with Goodness of Both will taste fantastic and will have the added benefit of being a great source of fibre at lunch time. Testament to the great taste and unique benefit, Goodness of Both has quickly become Johnston Mooney & O’Brien’s second most popular variant – a must for any retailer.|December 2011|Retail News|39

Bord Bia Food & Drink Industry Awards

Jameson Lifts Export Award Jameson was one of the big winners at the Bord Bia Food & Drink Industry Awards.

Pictured are (l-r): Kevin Knightly, CEO, Rabobank Ireland, award sponsors; Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD; Rosemary Garth, Communications Director, Irish Distillers, whose Jameson brand won the Export Award; and Michael Carey, Chairman, Bord Bia.

AS Irish food and drink exports approach a record €9 billion in 2011, the key contribution of Jameson Irish whiskey was recognised when it won the Bord Bia Food and Drink Export Award. In 2010, the iconic brand passed a key milestone, selling 3m cases of whiskey globally and is set to reach 4m cases by 2012. Meanwhile, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard are investing over €100m in Ireland over the coming three years to sustain its rapid expansion. “Irish Distillers has shown huge marketing commitment to Irish whiskey and its exceptional export performance is to be welcomed, not only for the sustained double digit growth in exports, but for the fact that it promotes the Irish identity in more than 120 countries around the world,” noted Simon Coveney TD, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine. “It is proudly rooted in Irish heritage and tradition and its global reach provides a platform to build awareness and enhance the brand reputation of our entire food and drink industry, a key element of Food Harvest 2020.”

Pictured are (l-r): Kevin Knightly, CEO, Rabobank Ireland, award sponsors; Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD; John Flahavan, Chairman, Flahavan’s, winners of the Domestic Success Award; and Michael Carey, Chairman, Bord Bia.

Award Winners

Eight Irish companies in all were honoured at the Bord Bia awards ceremony. Kerrygold and Cashel Blue were honoured with a Special Award in recognition of their co-branding, ‘co-opetition’ initiative in the US market. Other winners included Flahavan’s, who won the Domestic Success Award; Country Crest, who won the Sustainability Award; Largo Foods, who took the Branding Award for their Tayto brand; Natasha’s Living Food, who won the Innovation Award for Kale Crunchies, a healthy crisp alternative made from dried locally grown kale; and the Entrepreneurial Award went to Arun Kapil, Managing Director, Green Saffron, the Cork company that specialises in premium, farm-fresh whole spices and blends for use in home and professional kitchens. “In spite of all the challenges we face – it is also probably the most exciting time ever to be in our industry,” summarised Michael Carey, Chairman, Bord Bia. “The increase in exports would be impressive at any time but against the backdrop of global economic uncertainty and our own domestic difficulties, it is truly remarkable. Equally remarkable are the achievements of the award winners, who have demonstrated success in areas critical to future growth, from innovation and branding to sustainability and entrepreneurship.”

Michael Hoey, Managing Director of Country Crest, winner of the Sustainability Award (third from left) is pictured with Kevin Knightly, CEO, Rabobank Ireland, award sponsors; Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD; and Michael Carey, Chairman, Bord Bia.

Kevin Knightly, CEO, Rabobank Ireland, award sponsors, and Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, are pictured presenting Raymond Coyle, Managing Director of Largo Foods with the overall Branding Award for its Tayto brand. Also pictured is Michael Carey, Chairman, Bord Bia (right).

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Centra Off Licence of the Year Awards


Excellence in the

Off Trade

Pictured at the Edward Dillon Centra Off Licence of the Year Awards 2011/2012 are Martin Kelleher, MD, Centra, with Winners of the Wine Store of the Year in the Convenience Category, Donal & Ailish Hickson of Hickson’s Centra, Tramore, and Andy O’Hara, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd.

The Centra Off Licence and Wine Store Awards 2011/2012, sponsored by Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd, were held recently in Dublin. EDWARD Dillon & Co. Ltd announced the winners of the Centra Off Licence and Wine Store Awards 2011/2012, which took place recently in the Grand Hotel, Malahide, Co. Dublin. The judging panel saw a strong representation from counties across Ireland, including Limerick, Cork, Dublin, Sligo, Cavan, Clare, Monaghan, Roscommon, Westmeath, Waterford and Donegal. Cosgrove’s Centra, Maugheraboy, Co. Sligo, were the winners of the Centra Off Licence of the Year 2011/2012 Award, with Ryan’s Centra, Raheen, receiving the Edward Dillon Wine Store of the Year 2011/2012, both in the Neighbourhood Category. In the Convenience Category, Chawke’s Centra Castletroy, Co. Limerick, was the winner of the Edward Dillon Centra Off Licence of the Year 2011/2012 Award, with Hickson’s Centra, Tramore, Co. Waterford, being awarded the Edward Dillon Centra Wine Store of the Year Award. The winning stores from Castletroy, Maugheraboy, Tramore and Raheen accepted their awards from Andy O’Hara, Commercial Director of Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd, and Martin Kelleher, Managing Director, Centra. The winners receive a trip of a lifetime to South America where they will visit Vina Carmen in Chile and Dona Paula in Argentina. During the trip, they will visit the stunning vineyards on the slopes of the Andes mountains, meet the team of talented winemakers at the respective wineries and see the winemaking processes first hand. They will also get to sample the latest vintages from Vina Carmen and Dona Paula. The 20 finalist stores were judged by independent consultant Carthage Conlon and were assessed on a range of criteria, including overall appearance, innovation and customer service. Andy O’Hara, Commercial Director of Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd, said, “This is the second year that we have sponsored these awards, and the standard of entry keeps on improving. Edward Dillon are delighted to be associated with such a prestigious awards programme. Congratulations to each of the category winners on their achievement. They have done a superb job in the face of such challenging economic conditions.”

Martin Kelleher, MD, Centra, is pictured at the Edward Dillon Centra Off Licence of the Year Awards 2011/2012 with Winner of the Wine Store of the Year in the Neighbourhood Category, Tom Ryan of Ryan’s Centra, Raheen, Co. Limerick, and Andy O’Hara, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd.

Mary & Tom Chawke of Chawke’s Centra, Castletroy, Winner of the Edward Dillon Centra Off Licence of the Year Award 2011/2012 in the Convenience Category, are pictured with Martin Kelleher, MD, Centra, and Andy O’Hara, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd.

Pictured at the Edward Dillon Centra Off Licence of the Year Awards 2011/2012 are Andy O’Hara, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd with Des & Martha Cosgrove, Rose Feeney and Stephen McGuinness of Cosgrave’s Centra, Maugheraboy, Co. Sligo, Winner of the Edward Dillon Centra Off Licence of the Year Award 2011/2012 in the Neighbourhood Category, and Martin Kelleher, MD, Centra.|December 2011|Retail News|41

Drinks News

Bulmers Launches Special Blended Ciders

Corona Light Launches in 2012

BULMERS Specials are an intriguing new range of blended cider, which blend familiar refreshing Bulmers Original Irish Cider with unexpected yet inviting flavours like rhubarb, honey and infused spices, to create a completely new and indulgent cider drinking experience. Each variant of Bulmers Specials has been carefully crafted to create its own distinct character and rewarding taste, which is best enjoyed served chilled in a glass without ice, a unique and innovative way to enjoy cider. The range includes Bulmers Specials ‘Spiced Apple and Honey’, infusing Bulmers Original Irish Cider with honey, zesty orange peel and a touch of cinnamon, and Bulmers Specials ‘Spiced Apple and Rhubarb’, combining Bulmers Original Irish Cider with light spices, including cinnamon, and the tartness of Rhubarb.

Griffith Park Sparkling Wine THE POPULAR, multiaward winning Griffith Park Sparkling Brut & Sparkling Rosé will be available exclusively at Centra and SuperValu across Ireland at the special launch price of €10.99. Griffith Park is a family business headed by second generation Irish winemaker Islay Kennedy, who said, “I am passionate about my Irish roots and delighted to be able to offer Griffith Park to Ireland.”

Heineken Hits New Heights in 2011 2011 was another impressive year for Heineken in the off trade, which saw it add a number of very successful campaigns to the highlight reel. Hugely successful on-pack promotions for UEFA Champions League, Oxegen and Rugby World Cup gave Irish fans the opportunity to attend some of the most sought after events in sport and music around the world. Throughout the year, Heineken make it easy to cater for every occasion with offers including special edition 12 bottle packs; 20 bottle packs; 8 can packs, 12 can packs and a 24 can slab. All Christmas activations are supported with a new suite of complementary POS for all off trade partners.

McGuigan Wines’ Dublin City Vineyard MULTI-AWARD winning wine producer McGuigan Wines will roll out is hugely successful McGuigan City Vineyard in Dublin next summer. Recently hailed as the ‘world’s best winemaker’ for the second time in three years by the prestigious International Wine and Spirit Competition, McGuigan will create the first ever urban vineyard in the Irish capital. Scheduled for late summer 2012, a living, breathing ‘real life’ vineyard will take centre stage in Dublin’s financial district, complete with over 80 60-year old Semillon vines, a cellar door, wine barrels, tractors and chief winemaker Neil McGuigan. Consumers will be encouraged to walk amongst the vineyard whilst sampling the latest new releases from the McGuigan portfolio.

BARRY & Fitzwilliam have announced the launch of Corona Light to the Irish market in January 2012. This will be the first time the brand will be exported beyond the USA and Mexican markets. Following extremely positive consumer research conducted with the Amárach Research company in summer 2011 – where both brand perception and taste tests proved to be extremely positive – Barry & Fitzwilliam decided that the market is ready for something exciting and revolutionary in the light beer, and overall beer category in Ireland. The light beer market in Ireland equates to about 50m bottles per annum and “our aspiration for Corona Light is to have a 10% market share in year one”, said Michael Barry Managing Director of Barry & Fitzwilliam.

New MD at Pernod Ricard UK PERNOD Ricard has announced the appointment of Denis O’Flynn as Managing Director of Pernod Ricard, UK. Denis joined Irish Distillers in 1998 as Human Resources Director, having held various positions in the drinks industry in Ireland since 1984. He was appointed Commercial Director Ireland in March, 2010 and has held the position of Managing Director, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard since July 2011. Denis will report to Laurent Lacassagne, Chairman and CEO of Pernod Ricard Europe, and will be a member of the Pernod Ricard Europe Regional Executive Committee.

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Value Added Services

Growing Your Customer Base Anything that brings added footfall to your store is to be welcomed in the current climate. INCREASING the amount of consumers through your doors and into your shop has never been more vital than in these straitened times. Anything that can grow footfall to your store is to be welcomed, as invariably, increased customer numbers means more sales. Providing value added services in your store increases the likelihood of customers choosing your shop over a rival’s, whether it be bill-pay services, greeting cards, lottery tickets, DVD rental, gift card provision, top-up for mobile phones, fuels and fire-logs, dry cleaning, digital photo processing and printing, photocopying etc. In short, you should utilise anything at your disposal to get more bodies into your store, which may seem obvious but cannot be over-stated. Put simply, if a customer comes into your

Card Connection franchisees provide advice on how to appeal to appropriate demographics by selecting and displaying the right cards and gifts in order to maximise sales.

store for a birthday card and lottery ticket for a simple gift, they are likely to spend more money in-store on other items.

Card Connection

With Irish retailers under increasing economic pressure, the opportunity to diversify stock with no risk or outlay has never come at a better time. However, Card Connection, the leading greeting card publisher and franchisor for the region has, in fact, been supplying value added services to Irish retailers for many years, including the likes of Barry Group, Gala Retail Services, Musgrave, Londis, BWG, Texoil Limited and Topaz, plus many independent convenience stores. A member of the Irish Franchise Association, Card Connection was first established in 1992. Franchisees regularly deliver and merchandise a selection of premium-quality greetings cards and gifts on a ‘consignment’ basis throughout Ireland. This is a little like sale-or-return, except display equipment and merchandising expertise is available on free loan, allowing retailers to expand stock levels at absolutely no risk, according to Andrew Cutler, Sales and Franchise Director, Card Connection: “One major advantage for using this service is that franchisees have a detailed understanding of both the greeting card market and the local customer base and so offer this experience of the greeting card market to retailers as part of their service.” In Ireland, the greeting card market is substantial. There are

Card Connection, the leading greeting card publisher and franchisor, has been supplying value added services to Irish retailers for many years.

many seasonal occasions where it is appropriate to send a card. Occasion cards like Easter, Holy Communion and ‘Thank You Teacher’, as well as for the usual Christmas, Valentine’s, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day and Birthday celebrations, all increase the potential sales for the retailer significantly and Card Connection’s franchisees help retailers achieve this. As the franchisees and their staff reside in the areas that they service, they are able to provide advice on how to appeal to appropriate demographics by selecting and displaying the right cards and gifts in order to maximise|December 2011|Retail News|43

Value Added Services sales. “Because the way the cards are displayed has a major influence on how many are sold, franchisees work closely with retailers to improve the look and feel of the ranges within the display they supply,” notes Andrew. Franchisees visit retailers about once a month to remove old stock and deliver new designs to appeal to the target market and ensure the displays are always kept looking fresh and up-to-date. “The types of cards that work really well are often the handcrafted style and luxury tall designs, which are both unique and special, offering the customer something different,” Andrew explains. Card Connection has a team of four franchisees employing a total of 20 staff to support retailers with these value added services. FOR further information about Card Connection in Ireland, please call 041 9803140 or visit:


The introduction of innovative solutions and products has been key in attracting and maintaining the support of the 2,400 Irish retailers who currently operate on the PostPoint network. This year alone, PostPoint has boosted its BillPay facility to over 140 bills, the largest in the country, allowing customers to pay the majority of national and regional bills through their local PostPoint shop. One of the most exciting products to be added to the PostPoint portfolio in 2011 is the new One4all Online Gift Card. For no extra fee, customers can shop online with their One4all Online Gift Card at selected online retail partners. Unlike some alternative online cards and vouchers, the One4all Online Card can also be used in physical stores, as full or part payment in any of One4all’s 4,500 retail partners. PostPoint also recently added three other online payment solutions: Volt, a pre-paid MasterCard which enjoys all the functionality of a regular MasterCard but which doesn’t carry any risk of debt; Ukash and paysafe, two online payment solutions which are aimed specifically at the online entertainment market and allow customers to pay cash for online activities. “Our retailers know they can count on us to deliver innovation, both in terms of technology but also in terms of new product offerings which will drive

One4all Gift Cards can be spent in over 4,500 outlets across Ireland, and can also be spent online or used as a virtual visa.

footfall into their stores,” concludes Barry Dignam, Head of Marketing & Sales, PostPoint. “We look forward to continuing to supply top level products, customer support and e-transaction solutions to all of our customers across the island of Ireland for many years to come.” For more information, contact PostPoint on 1890 20 42 20 or visit

National Lottery

Since the launch of the National Lottery, it has raised over €3.6 billion for good causes, with more than €1 billion of that sum raised in the last four years. Indeed, the National Lottery raised €243.7m for good causes in 2010. On average, the National Lottery paid out over €1m every day of the year to players, according to their 2010 Annual Report. Total sales were €772m, down 5% in a challenging retail environment. Lotto related draw games continued to be the main product category, accounting for €430.6m or 55.8% of sales in 2010. EuroMillions generated sales of €98.6m, while the associated EuroMillions Plus game, which is exclusive to Ireland, achieved sales of €33.2m, and sales of Scratch Card games accounted for 20% of the business and contributed €153.2m in sales. Sales of TellyBingo were up 7.2% to €15.3m, from €14.3m in 2009. Total sales of Monday Million were €20.6m, with the launch of Monday Million Plus in April 2010 generating sales of €3.7m of this amount. Three Millionaire Raffle/ Sweepstakes limited edition draw games generated sales of €10.6m in 2010. The All or Nothing daily game generated sales of €9.9m in its first full year of operations, up from €3.6m in 2009.

Total operating costs were reduced to €108.4m or 14% of sales, including €48.1m in agents’ commission. In 2011, the National Lottery’s 25th year of operations, the focus was on “enhancing and promoting our wide range of lottery games to new and existing players”, according to Dermot Griffin, Chief Executive. This included major changes to the EuroMillions game, with the introduction of a second weekly draw on Tuesday nights, even bigger Jackpots and more chances to win. See for more information.


In its efforts to support its retail customers with a valued portfolio of retail add-on products, Payzone is now distributing a wide range of branded prepaid gift card products and digital content through its retail network. This initiative enables Payzone agents to sell various digital content and branded pre-paid gift cards to their customers. Some of the branded prepaid giftcards that are already signed up for distribution and stocking in the Irish market include: iTunes, Jagex Runescape, Playfish, Moshi Monsters, Nintendo Ireland, Zynga, Sony Online, IMVU, Sony Playstation, Hotel Voucher Shop, Argos, Debenhams, Arcadia Group and Ticketmaster. As part of its marketing efforts, Payzone agents are provided with specially designed gift card racks on which to display the cards and in-store merchandising Point of Sale to promote the cards available. For more information, call Payzone on 1800 746 4484 or visit

Jim Deignan, Managing Director, Payzone Ireland, celebrating the fact that Payzone now distributing a wide range of branded prepaid gift card products and digital content.

44|Retail News|December 2011|

On the Vine

Jean Smullen looks back over 2011 in the Irish wine trade, and highlights some of the best value wines across various price points.


Year in Wine

2011 saw a continuation of aggressive discounting, which was the biggest factor driving sales of wine on the Irish market. The average price point dropped from €8.67 to €6.99 and that was mostly achieved by cutting

margins and discounting. Did the consumer stay with the brand when the price went up? Not a bit of it! Anecdotal evidence from a cross section of retailers from across the country indicated that the biggest

factor currently driving wine sales are promotional offers. As soon as the price returns to its normal level, the customer goes on to the next offer. There is no doubt that the last few years have been

particularly difficult for the wine trade in Ireland, as they try to deal with the new economic reality. Sales in wine increased overall during 2010, largely because of the 2009 decrease in Excise

Great wines Over € 10 McGuigan Black Label Sparkling Rosé NV: €14.99 (Barry & Fitzwilliam)

2006 Thomas Barton Bordeaux Reserve: €12.99 (Gleeson Incorporating Gilbeys)

A new light fruity sparkling wine carefully crafted to appeal to today’s consumers. This is made predominantly from Shiraz. Multi-award winning wine producer Neil McGuigan of McGuigan Wines was hailed as the world’s best winemaker’ in 2011 for the second time in three years by the International Wine and Spirit Competition. McGuigan is the biggest selling Australian wine brand on the Irish market, with 23% of all Australian wine sales (Source: ACNielsen, September 2011).

This is a blended French red wine made from two grapes, Merlot (60%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (40%). Merlot is an early ripening grape; it gives soft summer fruit with ripe approachable tannin. Cabernet Sauvignon ripens later, and has more tannin as a result, which adds the backbone to the wine. This is a classic red Bordeaux, and a great wine to serve with meat.

2009 Jacobs Creek Reserve Chardonnay: €12.99 (Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard) This Jacob’s Creek Reserve Chardonnay was awarded the accolade of best New World White Wine Under €14 in the National Off-Licence Association’s (NOffLA) Gold Star 20112012 Wine Collection. This wine is from the Adelaide Hills region in South Australia. The high altitude hills and valleys of the region provide the perfect backdrop for producing crisp, elegant contemporary styles of Chardonnay, such as this example from one of Ireland’s best known brands.

2009 Carmen Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon: €14.99 (Edward Dillon & Co Ltd) This wine was a Gold Medal winner at the 2011 International Wine & Spirit Competition. It was the only Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon to receive a gold medal. This is a wine with huge potential. Chile is a big-selling category on the Irish market and mid-priced wines such as these are very much to the fore when the consumer is trading up. Make sure to have it in your fine wine section.|December 2011|Retail News|45

On the Vine Duty. The Government had increased duty on wine in 2008, resulting in a huge increase in cross-border trading. The reduction in excise duty in 2009 resulted in a repatriation of this trade back to the Republic

of Ireland and a modest recovery in volume sales. However, this year’s VAT increase could reverse this completely and erode the market even further. According to the Alcohol Beverage Federation of

For That Special Occasion 2009 Drouhin Chablis Reserve de Vaudon: €22 (Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard) The wines in Chablis are fermented in stainless steel and old wooden barrels; the style is steely and crisp but with ripe, full-bodied fruit. 2009 was a very warm vintage in Burgundy so this Chablis has a more rounded flavour, with lots of tropical fruit showing through. Drouhin Chablis Reserve de Vaudon is produced on approximately 15 acres of vines known as ‘The Moulin de Vaudon’ located in the Valley of Vauvillien. This valley is nestled between the Mont de Milieu and Montée de Tonnerre Premier Cru vineyards and is part of a 95-acre property owned by the Drouhin family.

Ireland (ABFI), the trends for the first half of 2011 show a worrying pattern, with the alcohol sector suffering a 7% retraction. This is disappointing, as it represents a reversal of the modest recovery in the total market recorded in 2011. Figures showed beer receipts down by 11%, cider down by 7.5%, spirits showed a decrease of 4% and for the same period, wine sales were down by 5%.

With the VAT increase, the wine market will decline even further, the consumer will go back over the border to buy alcohol; thus resulting in a decrease in excise duty returns. Albert Einstein once described insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. The Government’s decision does not bode well for 2012.

New Zealand Wine Fair THE New Zealand Wine Fair takes place on Monday, January 30, 2012, in the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, Golden Lane, Dublin 18. Over 30 producers and 200 wines will be on show. Times are: Trade: 12 noon – 18:00; Consumer: 18:30 – 20:30. See for more information.

Good Value Wines Under €10

Stephanie Gallo, the granddaughter of Ernst Gallo, who founded the winery in 1933, was in Dublin this year for the launch of Barefoot on the Irish market.

2010 Barefoot Merlot: €8.49 (Cassidy Wines)

2009 Antares Cabernet Sauvignon DO Central Valley: €6.99 (Ampersand)

This is a very approachable wine from California. Merlot is a low tannin red grape, giving soft black cherry fruit with hints of spice and mocha. Ideal for the novice drinker, Barefoot’s extensive range of varietals includes Pinot Grigio and White Zinfandel among others. This brand generates sales and has a big following with younger consumers, so it’s worth stocking.

Antares is the name of a range of wines produced by the Santa Carolina winery. This is a great value wine. For red grapes, Chile is hard to beat when it comes to Cabernet Sauvignon and this wine is no exception, with lovely herbal character, such as mint, with lovely ripe cassis fruit. At this price, this Chilean Cabernet offers great value: lots of fruit flavours, good firm tannin and a very competitive price.

Face to Face Frizzante Vino de la Tierra (Castilla y Leon): €8.99 (Classic Drinks) This is a great party wine. It is made from Spain’s best known red grape, Tempranillo. It is a slightly sparkling rosé wine with a good amount of residual sugar and lovely berry fruit flavours of cherry and raspberry.

2010 Giesen Sauvignon Blanc: €8.99 (Greenlea Wines/Boyne Valley Foods) The Giesen brothers have always thought big. They bought their first Marlborough vineyard in 1993, and then in 1999 they built a new winery in Blenheim. Today they own over 300 hectares in Marlborough and their Sauvignon Blanc is a fresh and lively product of modern winemaking. This is great value New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc at a very competitive price. New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc is a must-stock these days for anyone retailing wine.

2009 Sangre De Toro: €9.99 (Findlater Wine & Spirit Co.) Garnacha, or Grenache as it is also known, is the most cultivated Mediterranean grape worldwide. This wine is made from Grenache produced by one of Spain’s best know winemakers, Miguel Torres. Garnacha vines were once also known as ‘Tinto Aragonés’ (red of Aragon), and today are most commonly referred to by their French name, Grenache. This wine has rich, complex aromas of spices and blackberries, velvety tannins with elegant flavours of liquorice and dark forest fruits. Spanish wine is very much on the up and in great demand; this is another wine brand that resonates with the consumer.

46|Retail News|December 2011|

Shelf Life

GALA Retail Services have been going the extra mile to add revenue to the 200 stores across the Group. By teaming up with Shared Access to provide mobile communication infrastructure installations, the partnership will accommodate increased data capacity requirements for new and emerging technologies such as iPhones and Android devices. Gala has high hopes it will bring an additional revenue stream to its retailers. In addition, Gala is also introducing a giftcard for customers, which will encourage customer loyalty, and be available in selected Gala stores from December. Aishling Dempsey and Niall Clyne, from Shared Access are pictured with Eamonn King, Head of IT, Gala Retail Services Limited. CONGRATULATIONS to The Butler’s Pantry store on Mount Merrion Avenue in Dublin, which was awarded with the title of Small Store of the Year 2012 at the Retail Excellence Ireland Awards. Eoin Warner, Head of Retail, is pictured with the Award.

WHOLEFOOD brand Dee’s Eat Well, Be Happy, has announced details of a new interactive promotion that offers tech-savvy shoppers a fast-track method of signing up to the company’s popular VIP club. The forward-thinking promotional campaign utilises QR (Quick Response) technology. Using any smartphone, shoppers who purchase Dee’s ‘Real Meals’ can scan the black and white QR tag on the outer packaging, which will bring them directly to a VIP club sign-up page, where they can register to avail of ongoing VIP club offers and promotions. Deirdre (Dee) Collins is pictured with Martin Kelleher, Managing Director, SuperValu, as part of Enterprise Ireland’s SuperValu Supplier Development Programme.

THE Cadbury Foundation has awarded a STG£5,000 donation to Barretstown, on behalf of Kraft Foods employee, and longstanding Barretstown volunteer, Stephen Hynes. The Cadbury Foundation rewarded Stephen to celebrate his continued dedication to volunteering. Stephen has been volunteering at Barretstown since 1999 and remains a firm supporter of the children’s charity organisation. Stephen is pictured with four-year-old twins Ella and Cillian, from Glasnevin. Ella was diagnosed with Leukaemia when she was seven months old and since then the Weldon Family has been to Barretstown three times. BORD Bia will hold a Small Business Open Day for small food and drink producers on January 18, 2012 between 9.00am and 2.30pm at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Blanchardstown, Dublin 15. The Bord Bia Small Business Open Day will provide an opportunity for small food and drink producers to access the range of programmes and services available to support business success in 2012. The event, entitled ‘Delivering insights for success in 2012’, will showcase the wide range of services on offer from Bord Bia and other support agencies and organisations to assist companies in planning for growth and business development. The event is free of charge to attend. To secure your place at the Bord Bia Small Business Open Day, please contact Rebecca Moore at or telephone (01) 6142204. For further information or to book online, please visit SOFRIMAR from Kilmore Quay in Wexford have been named Seafood Exporter of the Year 2011 at the annual Export Industry Awards. The judging panel were particularly impressed with the strong growth Sofrimar have achieved, their success in market development and product innovation, the continued focus on research and development, all vital elements of their corporate growth and marketing strategy. “The award is a testament to the dedication and commitment of our management and staff. It would not have been possible without the quality of supply sourced from local fishermen and the continued support of our many customers worldwide,” said Leslie Bates, Managing Director of Sofrimar, who is pictured (right) with Lorcan Barden, Sofrimar. FOR the second year running, Bord Bia teamed up with the National College of Art and Design (NCAD) to run a competition for students to redesign the branding and packaging for a number of its food and drink companies. The judges included Dermott Rowan, Managing Director of Orla Kiely, and representatives from NCAD and Bord Bia. In total, six students were honoured with awards including joint overall winners Mary Leonard from Sligo and Kathi Burke from Waterford, pictured here with their award winning designs. 26 final year students from the Visual Communications Faculty worked with 10 Irish food and drink companies – Butler’s Pantry, Dairygold, Dragon Nutrition, Folláin, Fusco Foods, Hogan’s Farm, Ina’s Kitchen Desserts, Irish Dairy Board, Nutritious Nibbles, Tipperary Kitchen, all members of Bord Bia’s Brand Forum. For more information visit CONGRATULATIONS to the winners of the Retail News/FloGas competition, Jane Finnerty from Kinnegad, Co. Meath, and Mark O Brien from Drogheda, Co. Louth, who both won a Flogas Superser heater, just in time for winter.

Have you ever thought much about refrigeration and cost-efficiency? I have. Liam Kirwan, DAIKIN refrigeration expert

New commercial refrigeration from DAIKIN: ZEAS – an inverter-controlled system that connects as many cooling units as you like and is up to 30% more efficient.

Daikin Ireland Liam Kirwan - Refrigeration Sales Engineer Tel: 01-6423430 email: For further information on Daikin‘s product range visit:


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Retail News Dec 2011  
Retail News Dec 2011  

Retail News is a one-stop shop for Irish grocers, designed, researched and written with the retail manager and store owner in mind. Keep up...