The Nestlé Rowntree Manager of the Month for April is awarded to Gufran Ashraf, general manager of Bestway, Abbey Road, in north London. Gufran started his career with Bestway in 1992, after spending the first three years of his career in Saudi Arabia working for Mitsubishi as a fleet sales executive. Now, after only nine months at Bestway’s flagship Abbey Road depot, he has already impressed Nestlé Rowntree with his enthusiastic attitude and proven commitment to providing a first-class service for retailers.
The Abbey Road depot is a massive 225,000sq ft, with between 300 and 350 customers coming through its doors every day. As soon as a customer enters the building they are Gufran’s responsibility, and he believes the key to keeping them coming back is an excellent product range with excellent availability.
Nestlé Rowntree recognised Gufran for this award for his role in setting up a Sunrise Radio trade day, one of the many examples of Bestway and Nestlé Rowntree working together to meet the shared objective of increasing retailers’ sales.
The trade day involved Sunrise Radio hosting a live broadcast from the Abbey Road depot. Nestlé Rowntree provided a range of exciting promotions across their brands, which the radio show could then promote to retailers over the airwaves to draw them into the depot.
Once in depot, there were numerous points of theatre to ensure retailers could not fail to notice the promotions and activities. In addition, 10 extra sales staff were brought in by Nestlé Rowntree chiefly to sell the products and promotions to the retailers.
From the start, Gufran ensured the project had the full support of the Bestway management team. From organising a mailing to customers telling them about the day, to ensuring the brand messages were communicated in terms that meant something to the retailer rather than the consumer, he was involved every step of the way.
The fantastic execution of the day resulted in an excellent sales uplift for Bestway and Nestlé Rowntree. Considerably more customers visited Bestway, while Nestlé Rowntree increased its distribution points and sold many more products. Plus the retailers benefited from the promotions, which would have helped them increase their sales and profits, so it was a great result all round!