The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has confirmed the agenda for its Forecourt Seminar 2009. Speakers include Stewart Samuel, IGD, Tony Evans from Christie + Co, Carol Smith, Ashdene Service Station, Spencer Marshall and Richard Box, both from JTI, Chris Mitchener, Licensing Solutions, Nick Vandervell, UK Petroleum Industry
The RoadChef services on the M6 Toll at Norton Canes includes a BP-branded forecourt and shop. The service station was the Forecourt Trader 'best motorway site' winner in 2007.
It has been a recurring theme of this column to look at steadily rising pump prices and point out the negative effect on retailers; in particular to highlight the effect of the 'retailer merchandising agreements' which have delivered a constant 'heads I win, tails you lose' bonus to the credit card companies. To restate the problem: the basic fuel margin (ie the difference between pump price (excl VAT and the invoiced price from the oil company) is calculated in terms of pence per litre and is effectively 'fixed' in the short term by most industry-standard supply agreements, regardless of pump prices. In contrast, virtually every traditional credit card agreement specifies that the 'commission' paid by the retailer to the card processor/acquirer is calculated as a percentage of the pump price. So while the retailer may still earn 3ppl whether the pump price is £1/litre or £1.30/litre, the card companies will see their income rise from (say) 1.75ppl to 2.275ppl.
== Callers having to drive really hard bargains ==
The lorry driver has a worried look on his face, will his truck fit under the low canopy on the Esso the forecourt?
June 6 will be a big day in the Dearing household. It will mark the end of an era for Mike and Julie as they hand over the keys of the service station which they have nurtured to success for the past 14 years. Following much discussion with close family, including their 14-year-old son Joshua,
Forget salads, soups and sushi - British consumers still choose a sandwich (chicken salad is their favourite) for their lunchtime nosh. Last year, according to Mintel, UK consumers spent around £4bn on sarnies, up from just £3.3bn in 2002, and the market is expected to grow further - to reach £5bn by 2012.
Danone Waters has announced its five-year tenure as Official Bottled Water of The Wimbledon Championships. Danone Waters will be spending £3m employing a range of marketing tactics to ensure Evian is synonymous with Wimbledon and Tennis this summer. The company will be supporting its
Hovis, the £380m bread brand from Premier Foods, is bringing back the iconic 'Little Brown Loaf' as part of a major autumn initiative.
Gourmet snack company Pipers Crisps Ltd will target smaller, independent retailers - and not major multiples - to sell its range of 'handcooked, 100% natural' products. The crisp range is flavoured with ingredients sourced from independent suppliers and include Anglesey Sea Salt, Biggleswade Sweet Chilli Parsnip, Sea Salt & Somerset Cider Vinegar and West Country Cheddar and Onion.
Imperial Tobacco is running a prize draw for its trade customers to win a Rizla-branded Suzuki GSK-R600 motorbike.
Fox's biscuits is running an ad campaign which features characters developed with animators behind Disney's Chronicles of Narnia.
Yeo Valley Organic is once again sponsoring the Glastonbury Festival.
Müllerlight has announced its Win A Summer to Remember promotion, which will feature on yogurt packs for the next few weeks.
Walkers is introducing Smoky Bacon flavour to its Big Eat range of crisps. The company says Smoky Bacon is its fifth best-selling standard bag flavour in impulse, worth £5m and growing at 20%. The Big Eat range, which has seven other flavours already on the market, is worth £27.7m and is growing at 6.1%.
Amia Foods is launching a Milky Way powdered milkshake this summer.
United Biscuits has relaunched its Multigrain Hula Hoops, including new flavours and a new recipe.
Pringles is running a promotion to coincide with Euro 2008, offering consumers the chance to meet Michael Owen and star in the next Pringles Football TV ad.
Ribena is supporting its new 100% Pure Juices with the launch of a £3m TV and radio ad campaign.
A couple of years ago one of my friend's daughters moved down to London. For some strange reason, my friend thought I was the right guy to ask for some property advice. The question was whether his daughter should buy a flat or rent one.