Appleby Westward, the regional distribution company for Spar stores in the South West, this week announced its highest new store recruitment figures in over five years.
The Saltash-based company, which services nearly 300 Spar stores (including Callington Spar & Post Office, pictured) throughout the region, has recruited 24 independent stores this year from various competitors, including four Co-op disposals.
In addition, the wholesaler has been integrating 32 Euro Garage forecourt sites throughout its territory this autumn, re-fitting and merchandising stores under the Spar fascia.
“We have enjoyed tremendous success with new store recruitment this year, and are budgeting to bring in a further 24 stores in 2016,” said Nick Kenworthy, Appleby Westward’s sales director.
“The majority of new sites are neighbourhood locations, although we continue to experience success in appealing to fuel retailers as well. Our appeal in this sector has been enhanced still further with the Chartman Group’s Winning Post store securing the Retail Industry Award for the Best Independent Forecourt in the UK.”
He added: “The development of the Spar brand range and its continued presence on television, along with our winning store format developments such as at Callington, we are able to demonstrate to independent retailers that we have the right solution to meet the challenges in the convenience market.
“We are delighted with the new partnerships we have forged with those independent retailers that have joined Appleby Westward in 2015 and we look forward to working closely with them in the future to enhance and develop their businesses.”
The majority of the Euro Garages outlets being incorporated are located in Hampshire and Dorset and will all be trading by the end of October. Some of the larger stores will include additional sub-brands like Subway and Greggs to complement the Spar offer, and all will feature Starbucks coffee.
Euro Garages is one of the UK’s largest privately-owned forecourt operators and, following the sell-off of sites by oil companies, is converting these forecourt shops to Spar stores.