SPAR UK enjoys series of awards

October 22, 2018 IN THE CATEGORY: Awards and prizes

What an end to the summer it was for SPAR UK, with a string of awards being won thanks to a fantastic performance by all partners and retailers over the last 12 months.

Retail Industry Awards

SPAR UK emerged victorious from this year’s Retail Industry Awards with the Symbol Group of the Year accolade in acknowledgment of its top-class store standards and ability to keep in touch with the latest consumer trends.

The judges felt SPAR remained “strong and stable” within a volatile market, with a great all-round package. “They really do tick all the boxes,” said one judge. The SPAR Own Brand wine range was also a big hit with the panel: “They lead the sector when it comes to wine,” said another.

SPAR UK has brought together all independent retailers to work on a marketing programme, put in place a comprehensive support package for newly launched stores, and further develop its own brand range – all of which is having a very positive effect.

The occasion was a triumph for all SPAR UK retailers with more awards being presented for Digital Engagement, Food-to-Go Retailer of the Year and Forecourt Retailer of the Year, to name just a few. Special mention goes to John Agnew for receiving this year’s Outstanding Achievement Award in recognition of the huge impact he has had on convenience retailing, not only in Northern Ireland but also across the UK and SPAR internationally.

SPAR Retail Show

The sold-out 2018 SPAR Retail Show was attended by more than 1,200 guests. The conference unveiled a series of inspirational new initiatives to provide retailers with ‘food for thought’ and give them tools to grow sales and margins. These included A.F. Blakemore’s ‘Tonight’s Tea’ concept, which was trialled across the business earlier in 2018, and the relaunch of fresh produce.

At this year’s Show, a host of SPAR retailers were recognised for their fantastic achievements over the past year with awards being won for Best Fresh Retailer, Best SPAR Brand Advocate, Best Independent Forecourt, Best Multi Site Forecourt, amongst others.

Forecourt Trader of the Year

Congratulations goes out to 12 SPAR winners at the 2018 Forecourt Trader Awards. The awards were presented for Best Community Engagement, Best Customer Service, Best Food-to-Go Outlet, Best Forecourt Team of the Year and Best Site Manager. The overall prize of Forecourt Trader of the Year went to SPAR Maxol A26 for providing customers with extensive, wide-ranging grocery and food options in a modern and welcoming environment.

Local Shop Quality Food Awards

At this year’s Local Shop Quality Food Awards, SPAR UK’s Own Brand products once again took top honours with 18 medals across a variety of categories. SPAR UK also won Wholesaler of the Year for the fifth time.

SPAR Luxury Mince Pies won the coveted Christmas Gold Q award, the highest honour achievable, following extensive benchmarking this year to improve the recipe.

The record number of entries for this year’s awards illustrated just how highly regarded these accolades are within the sector.

Source: SPAR UK

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The United Kingdom (UK) became a member of SPAR in 1956 when a group of independent wholesalers obtained the SPAR licence from SPAR International. There are five regional partners with strategically placed Distribution Centres in each region. A Central Office located in London provides national Marketing and Buying services for the group and supports the development of the SPAR Brand in the UK.

SPAR has led the convenience market in the UK for many years but has faced increasing competition in recent times. Always innovative, SPAR Partners have continued to grow the brand. A combination of independently-owned licensed retailers and company-owned stores spanning forecourts, airports, train stations, city centres and local neighbourhoods can be found throughout the country.