Posted by:
Mary Lewis, Senior Account Executive
23rd Nov 17

Winning in Convenience – Cirkle’s introduction to the Asian Trader Conference


Members of the Cirkle trade team were delighted to be exclusively invited to the inaugural Asian Trader Conference on Tuesday 21st November at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge, prior to the legendary Asian Trader Awards.

Before the merriment of the awards and Cirkle’s own success in the Marketing and Communications category, we enjoyed an action-packed afternoon with impressive key note speakers discussing the current issues and what’s on the horizon for convenience stores.

With the convenience business worth £38billion, employing 370,000 people and including 50,000 stores; Cirkle is proud to be working in such a buoyant sector and had the joy of meeting enthusiastic retailers with a passion for their industry. This was in evidence at the Asian Trader Conference where retailers shared case studies, sat on panels and were quizzed by their peers on how they run their stores and shared their top tips.

The conference showcased the importance of suppliers working alongside their retail partners on their joint enterprise – to increase sales of the best products. Speakers included Lord Mark Price CVO, former Managing Director of Waitrose and previous Deputy Chairman of John Lewis, who was one of the first to greet the audience and outline his six principles for a successful business.

The principles, which he championed during his tenure at John Lewis, focus on reward & recognition, sharing information, empowerment, wellbeing and doing something worthwhile and satisfying. With these values at a forefront of a business, the rest will follow and, from my personal experience of being part of Cirkle, I can concur that these are the pillars of a happy team!
Other speakers also came from IGD, outlining the expectations for the sector and the opportunities for retailers; AG Barr, advising on the future of soft drinks with the upcoming sugar levy; prominent retailer, Sid Avtar, who showcased the importance of category management in his own store; and inspirational retailers and pillars of their community, Hema Brar and Kay Patel. The latter later won the Asian Trader of the Year Award 2017 during the evening ceremony.

Cirkle was delighted to be invited to the publication’s first conference as our trade team prides itself on truly immersing itself in the sectors in which it works, especially in convenience. Therefore, listening and meeting our clients’ customers is of considerable value as we keep our ear to the ground on what’s on retailers’ radars and how suppliers can support them with their business ambitions.

The conference was a welcome prequel to the 29th Asian Trader Awards and gave Cirkle even more reason to celebrate being part of such a progressive, inspirational and enterprising industry. Save us a seat at the Asian Trader Conference & Awards 2018!

Mary Lewis
Senior Account Executive

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