All Columnists articles – Page 16

  • Analysis

    Shop Talk with Tracy West

    2014-12-03T00:00:00Z

    Christmas is fast approaching and as I write this, I’m thinking about all the things I’ve still got to do. These include wrapping presents then wrapping them again in brown paper and sending them off to far flung places before those pesky ’last posting dates’. December is, of course, the ...

  • Analysis

    David Charman - Chairman CWA

    2014-12-03T00:00:00Z

    The end of 2014 is fast approaching and a major subject on people’s minds is UKIP and immigration. ’Take us out of Europe’, they cry and send back the illegal immigrants to their country of origin. This influx of keen, young labour has been coming for decades of course, ...

  • Analysis

    Brian Madderson - Chairman PRA

    2014-12-03T00:00:00Z

    This year could mark a watershed for the beleaguered independent sector with several structural changes swiftly impacting prospects. The oil companies continue their orderly retreat from direct retailing (Murco, Esso, Shell) and we have been monitoring these disposals carefully. We predict that the independent sector could increase to more than ...

  • Analysis

    Merril Boulton: Criminally intense

    2014-12-03T00:00:00Z

    Crime is certainly alive and well in the forecourt retailing sector and a scroll through the latest news on our website in the past few months is confirmation of that. From a serial cross-dressing fuel thief, to exploding cashpoints and attacks on sales assistants, there seems to be no ...

  • Analysis

    Shop Talk with Tracy West

    2014-11-19T00:00:00Z

    Christmas and the shopping frenzy that surrounds it is fast approaching. I know it’s still only November, but as we have a festive edition of Product News I thought I’d add my festive tuppence ha’penny’s worth. Christmas is an interesting time as you get some families that like to ...

  • Analysis

    Peter Harding - Retail technology consultant

    2014-11-19T00:00:00Z

    Everywhere we look these days things seem to be cloud based. What does this really mean? Many companies give you free space on the cloud to store files such as photos. It seems the idea is that you get a small amount of storage for free and are then enticed ...

  • Analysis

    Chris Hunt: UKPIA director general

    2014-11-19T00:00:00Z

    In January, the UK’s first Petroleum Driver Passport (PDP) was launched. It was developed by the Downstream Oil Industry Distribution Forum (DODF) to deliver a consistently high level of training to all petroleum tanker drivers, verified by an accredited third party. It represents a benchmark by which all petroleum driver ...

  • Analysis

    Merril Boulton: Hang on to your hats

    2014-11-19T00:00:00Z

    It’s like someone has dug a big hole, and fuel prices are falling into it at great speed. It’s actually quite weird seeing a price pole displaying figures of say, 122.9ppl for unleaded and 126.9ppl for diesel. They look more like museum pieces so long has it been since prices ...

  • Analysis

    Kevin Eastwood: BOSS executive director

    2014-10-03T00:00:00Z

    For more than 20 years BOSS, the British Oil Security Syndicate, has worked closely with fuel retailers, police, government departments and other agencies to reduce crime. So how disappointing was it to hear from Norman Baker, the Minister of State for Crime Prevention and the chief constable of Durham during ...

  • Analysis

    Merril Boulton: Awards showcase

    2014-10-03T00:00:00Z

    Excitement all round for the forecourt sector last month, what with the rather spectacular Forecourt Trader of the Year Awards (see full report, starting on page 49 and also the awards website www.forecourttraderawards.co.uk); and then the Shell announcement confirming the sale of around 250 sites. On awards night we ...

  • Analysis

    James Lowman: ACS Chief executive

    2014-10-03T00:00:00Z

    We have recently published the third edition of our annual look at the convenience sector, the Local Shop Report, which contains some great new insights into local shops, the people who run them and the communities they serve. The main story from the report is one of good news the ...

  • Analysis

    David Charman: chairman CWA

    2014-09-22T00:00:00Z

    Well, the summer seems to have come and gone all too quickly, but this year has seen car wash revenues increase for the first time in many years. Is it just the weather, or are we winning the battle against the rogue hand washes? Perhaps it is just that the ...

  • Analysis

    Brian Madderson: chairman PRA

    2014-09-22T00:00:00Z

    The recent news that the Klesch Group will acquire the UK refinery and terminal assets of Murphy Oil Company and that, around the same time, Motor Fuel Group will acquire its retail assets plus marketing and distribution to the dealers is welcome on several fronts. Firstly, the beleaguered Murco ...

  • Analysis

    Merril Boulton: Murco sold at last

    2014-09-22T00:00:00Z

    Well thank goodness for that. The Murco network has been sold at last (see News, page 4) after four years on the market. It got to the stage where it seemed like it was never going to happen, and as in a ’whodunnit’ that runs for too long, people seemed ...

  • Analysis

    Tracy West: Shop Talk

    2014-08-13T00:00:00Z

    Call me sad but I like a survey. I don’t always believe them, but I like to compare myself with those who’ve been surveyed. One of the surveys that always intrigues me is about the business an ATM is meant to bring to a convenience store. I’m not disputing ...

  • Analysis

    Peter Harding: Retail technology consultant

    2014-08-13T00:00:00Z

    I continue to be amazed by 3D printing. The latest printers are now being retailed at below $250. While this is only a toy, in reality it proves the point that new technologies still exist and abound. Amazon in the US, for example, has launched a new service where you ...

  • Analysis

    Chris Hunt: UKPIA director general

    2014-08-13T00:00:00Z

    In the past few months, all eyes have been on the European Parliament elections and the nomination of a new president of the European Commission. As the EU embarks on a new legislative term, we are presented with both new opportunities and new challenges. Above all, one of ...

  • Analysis

    Merril Boulton: Refining at a cost

    2014-08-13T00:00:00Z

    Amazing to visit the Phillips 66 Humber Refinery last month, and see the complex web of miles of pipework close up (see industry focus page 24), and wonder at the millions of chemical reactions that are constantly taking place within such dramatic structures. You are also made intensely aware ...

  • Analysis

    Tracy West: Shop Talk

    2014-07-12T00:00:00Z

    While travelling through France recently, I purchased a fabulous product called Nutella Go! That exclamation is theirs, not mine, but it deserves it because it is so good. Remember those KP dips that were all the rage years ago? Pots of chocolate with biscuit fingers to dip in ...

  • Analysis

    Merril Boulton: Passion that drives retailers

    2014-07-12T00:00:00Z

    Fuel retailers are extremely passionate about their business. They have to be to deal with all the daily aggro whether it’s stock problems, equipment breakdowns, needy customers, or those wretched drivers who seem to think they can drive off without paying for fuel. They also have to be passionate to ...