Natalie Cattermole

Natalie Cattermole: Taking dealerships forward with loyalty programme, BP Pulse and Wild Bean Cafe

Building customer loyalty will be one of the areas of focus forecourt operators can expect from the leadership of BP’s new senior dealer manager, Natalie Cattermole.

After 11 years in the business she has replaced Andy Allen, who has taken a senior role in BP’s company-owned retail network.

In an exclusive interview with Forecourt Trader, Cattermole, the first woman in the role for more than 20 years, said that the business was using its BPme customer rewards programme to get closer to its 850 dealer sites.

“I will bring loyalty into the role,” said Cattermole, who joined BP from Sainsbury’s in 2013, and has over 20 years’ experience in UK retailing.

As UK marketing director for BP’s 1,150 dealer and company-owned sites for the past three years, Cattermole helped to develop the global BPme brand which sees its fifth anniversary this June.

”BPme Rewards is still really important for us, so we are doing some new things in loyalty and particularly exclusively for dealers, because loyalty customers are worth more money, they come more often, and we really need to grow not just that brand love but that tangible relationship with customers and loyalty,” said Cattermole.

She believes that the double points loyalty offer currently running will be one of many bespoke deals specifically for dealers, and that the business is investing heavily in ”engagement programmes” for dealers to get their forecourt staff on board when it comes to improving the customer experience.

”We are building out lots of marketing tools, sending all of our dealers engagement boxes for their store colleagues. We are setting up some digital hubs which allow store colleagues to get access to information, training, competitions, and we wil be running some deeper dive intensive training for dealers who have real potential to drive their loyalty,” she said.

”That is how we are investing in our dealer network, to help them grow loyalty, to give them the opportunity to grow their loyalty bases.”

Cattermole maintains that helping to safeguard staff at dealer sites – which represent around 75% of BP’s forecourt estate – is another priority.

“We work in a risky business and at BP we pride safety as the first and foremost thing that we think about,” she said, adding that the lessons learned in the company-owned outlets from using body cameras and the Auror retail crime intelligence platform is being shared with dealers.

Another key area for her is promoting the Wild Bean Cafe self-service “micro-mart” food to go units, introduced to BP dealers in 2022, offering coffee, blended ice drinks, milkshakes, and hot food to go that is baked fresh on site every day. The modular design allows retailers short of space to choose which parts to take, but Cattermole hopes to increase the number of dealer sites with the full offer from 13 to 100 by the end of the year.


Cattermole hopes to increase the number of dealer sites taking the full offer from 13 to 100 by the end of the year

She says that helping dealers install EV charging is another priority. The energy giant introduced BP Pulse as its electrification brand in 2020, and the 36th dealer site at Rotherwas, Herefordshire, went live with the brand last month.

“BP Pulse is still an important focus to help dealers if they want to move through that transition. So we will look for opportunies for dealers when charging is right for us and right for them,” said Cattermole, who says that BP picks up the tab for the cost of the equipment. ”We are working actively with many dealers to offer BP Pulse,” she added.


BP Pulse is now at 36 of the energy giant’s dealers 

But for now she aims to get out into the industry and to “shake some hands”.

”I have worked in retail for over 20 years, a big chunk of that has been in marketing so I understand the missions that customers are on when they come to roadside convenience, what they are looking for now and in the future,” she said.

”I want to bring to this business the passion for customers that I see in so many of our dealer businesses, I know many of the dealers in the BP network so I see their passion and I want to harness that and bring that very customer-focused approach to our business.

“I want to leave behind resilient profitable dealership businesses in partnership with BP. It is very important that we are in partnership with our dealers and building those great relationships with the dealers is really important for my team.”