Delivered specialist Palmer and Harvey honoured some of the UK’s top retailers and suppliers at its annual awards at its Pro-retail 2014 gala dinner this week.
The winners were toasted by a 1,600-strong gala dinner crowd, including ex-Formula One driver, three-time Le Mans winner and sports commentator Allan McNish, Sussex County Cricket Club’s chief executive Zac Toumazi and former player Tony Cottey and comedian compere Dara O’Briain.
The awards are handed out to some of the most outstanding forecourt, convenience store and CTN retailers in the country with two special awards – High Street Hero of the Year and Retailer of the Year – recognising the true grit and success of retailers during the most challenging economic conditions in decades and their invaluable contribution to the communities which they serve. Both winners received £1000 pounds-worth of free stock as prizes.
Outstanding suppliers were chosen for their ability to offer not only excellent availability and great service levels, but also first-class sales support, business planning, communication and category management. An honorary award – Outstanding Contribution to Retail – was also handed to a leading industry figure for his work on behalf of the nation’s local stores.
- Retailer of the Year went to Chris Englefield from BW News in Bridgewater, Somerset (Pictured with Martyn Ward and Dara O’Briain) Chris saw a sales increase of over 47% in 2013-14 thanks to freeing- up an extra 40% of sales space in his store, well-informed category management, effective use of planograms and promotions and clever bespoke technology he built himself to achieve efficient stock management, housekeeping and home deliveries.
- High Street Hero of the Year went to Duncan amp; Chrissy Ross from Lochcarron near Inverness in Scotland. Duncan and Chrissy have taken the forty year-old business to a new level since taking over Lochcarron Garage from Duncan’s father. They have increased their store sales by 30% in the last year by providing the local village community with outstanding personal customer service and promotional deals every three weeks.
- Outstanding Contribution to Retail went to chief executive of the Association of Convenience Stores (ACS), James Lowman. James Lowman has been CEO of the trade association ACS, representing 33,500 members, for the past seven years. During that time he has steered the organisation through a new era of campaigning, lobbying, research and representation on behalf of over 33 thousand hard-working independent retailers.
Martyn Ward, managing director of Palmer and Harvey, praised the high quality of this year’s retailer award winners: “As retailers face increasingly competitive trading conditions, there is constant pressure to make improvements. Our winners have shown determination, innovation and outstanding initiative. They’ve also given their free time and services to the communities they serve ensuring they’re a key part of their local neighbourhoods; in turn, a loyal customer base is brought back to their doors. We’re also delighted to recognise James Lowman’s Outstanding Contribution to Retail. James has worked tirelessly to improve the lot of thousands of retailers. Under his stewardship the ACS has campaigned and made sure that the needs of the retailers are recognised by policy makers across the UK. He deserves our thanks. Many congratulations to all of our winners.”
- Impulse Supplier of the Year was won by Red Bull.
- Grocery amp; Non Food Supplier of the Year award went to Kellogg’s.
- Alcohol Supplier of the Year was picked up by Carlsberg UK Ltd
- Chilled, Fresh amp; Frozen Supplier of the Year Award was won by Hovis.
- Plus Extra Supplier of the Year Award was picked up by Rollover.
- Service Level Excellence Award was won by Republic Technologies.
- Product of the Year Award is chosen on the basis of the quality of a product’s launch and its ensuing commercial impact. This year’s winner was Cadbury Marvellous Creations Range by Mondelez.
- Palmer amp; Harvey Supplier of the Year Award went to The Wrigley Co