Following the provisional approval of the Tesco/Booker merger and the vote in favour of Co-op/Nisa, major national symbol group SPAR UK has announced a renewed recruitment drive. Flagging its recent growth and ongoing stability it aims to attract independent retailers seeking enhanced support to face the challenges of a changing competitive environment.
Sales up 6% in 2017
Revealing figures on a sixth consecutive year of growth, SPAR UK has reported that store numbers are already up 5% in 2017, driving increases both in wholesale sales to its member retailers and in retail sales to shoppers. Forecourts continues to be a major focus for expansion. SPAR is the biggest retail presence on UK petrol filling stations, providing the partner brand for stores on over 1,200 forecourts nationwide.
Format innovation to target stores above 3k sq ft
While providing retail solutions primarily targeted to small stores with an average sales area under 2,000 sq ft, SPAR UK has always had flexibility to support larger stores. Under the EUROSPAR fascia the national network includes a number of small supermarkets up to 5,000 sq ft. Now SPAR UK has launched a new concept for these large stores under the SPAR Market banner. The updated format, now live at Y Maes, Pwllheli in Wales, includes a host of new features such as fresh bakery, a fresh pizza counter, self-serve hot and cold food-to-go, and orange juicing machine and dry-ageing meat cabinet. Operated by established local retailer, Conrad Davies, the new store has been designed specifically to provide scope to showcase local produce and suppliers.
Ian Taylor, SPAR UK Retail Director commented:
'We offer independent retailers a highly profitable business model, which meets the needs of the changing customer, as well as offering independence and entrepreneurialism; and we encourage our retailers to build businesses that are hugely valued in the community. We are ready to move the convenience sector to the next level and bring independent retailers a bright and exciting future.'
Hold the date - IGD's Convenience Retailing Summit 2018 26 - 27 September ...
In a new two-day format IGD's annual convenience event will bring insight on all aspects of the sector from store formats to route-to-market, register your interest here to stay up-to-date on the programme as it builds.