Top 50 indies Patrick Sewell of Sewell Retail and Jeremy Clarke of Motor Fuel Group shared their philosophies on running a petrol retail business at the annual Forecourt Seminar organised by the Association of Convenience Stores and Petrol Retailers Association.

Record numbers attended the event at the King Power Stadium in Leicester last month, where the audience listened to wide-ranging presentations covering best practice, market trends and political developments in the retail sector, and included the PRA’s challenge on card payments.

Patrick Sewell revealed four key areas the company focuses on to keep the business sharp, which came under the headings of: lean retailing; energy consumption; more from less; and ’weekly vampires’ such as drive-offs and waste. He also spoke of the need to keep driving forward with new ideas because "standing still was not an option".

Jeremy Clarke spoke of the importance of building the right team; developing key partnerships; maximising fuel and non-fuel income; communicating your offer to customers; and good housekeeping.

Other presenters included Ramsay MacDonald from GB Oils; Julie Taylor from Midland Co-op; Steve Rodell from Christie & Co; and Phil Prow from Vianet Fuel Solutions.