Andrew Thewlis, finance director and company secretary of Landmark Wholesale, gave details of significant expansion plans for its Hot House store improvement scheme.
The scheme, which has been developed with financial support from suppliers, aims to provide a “makeover” for stores where retailers are committed to providing a service to their local community.
Thewlis said: “The concept was tested in 2002/3 and started to be rolled out in 2004. Thanks to our suppliers and their support we accelerated the roll-out late in 2005.
“We now stand at 500 stores converted and will hit 600-plus by the end of our financial year. Thanks to our suppliers’ pre-funding commitments we now have a fully funded four-year plan in which we will reach 2,500 stores.”
He concluded: “Wholesalers and retailers have to learn to change and adapt in order to find their market niches and develop their key points of difference. A growing number of Hot House stores will be driving this change, putting the independent retailer back at the heart of the community.”