Retailers are signing up to Shell in the UK because of the growing strength of the brand, which follows the company’s aspiration to be the number one global fuel retailer, according to David Moss, Shell UK’s general manager, retail.

Addressing a large audience of dealers at the company’s annual conference at the Celtic Manor Hotel in Newport, South Wales, yesterday, Moss said: “You didn’t sign up to Shell just because of the cost price, or the fuel (2015 was a record year for V-power), or the food – you signed because of the total package. You signed because of what we’re going to do in the future. We’re an innovative organisation. It’s not about the past, it’s not about today, it’s about tomorrow.”

With safety a key message – “a safe business is a good business” – Moss also stressed that dealers needed to be committed to all elements of the programmes driving the Shell retail business – what were referred to throughout the day’s various presentations as the “five fs” – fuel, food, fones, friendliness and facilities. These have been determined following feedback from the company’s Tell Shell programme, which receives around 20,000 hits a month in terms of customer feedback.

“We’re spending a fortune improving Shell... and dealers can’t just focus on one or two of those elements, but all of them together. There’s no point being a little part of Shell...”

With the company-owned site sell-off complete (400 changes in all to the Shell-branded estate), Shell now has 460 dealers and around 560 co-owned sites.

Its focus for 2016 is to continue to drive standards and service across its network to produce the best forecourt experience for its end-user customers, particularly in terms of technology. Wifi will be added to all company owned sites in 2016.

Shell will also be the only forecourt brand to accept Apple Pay at the pump when its Fill up and Go facility is enhanced in the summer.