MAR / APR DIGITAL EDITION – Spring into action – Positive start to year is good news

Welcome to the March/April edition of Wholesale Manager, the number one title for the UK’s cash & carries and delivered wholesalers.

READ THE MARCH / APRIL ISSUE HERE

frontIn the words of Ian Gilmartin, Barclays’ Head of Retail & Wholesale, after relatively modest retail sales figures for December the positive start to 2016 in the ONS retail figures is encouraging, given our economy’s reliance on consumer purchasing. Here’s to a glorious spring and summer, triggering a sales boom.

As spring arrives and the weather warms up, craft and speciality beers and ciders traditionally see a seasonal boost in wholesale demand. The ideal treats when out for a drink or relaxing in the garden and around the barbecue, at peak times of year stocks of beers and ciders can be hard to get hold of through the usual supply chain. An alternative means of sourcing supplies is to go through an online marketplace. In our Alcohol – Beers & Ciders feature we talk to Sam Ulph, MD of StarStock, the independent drinks portal, whose stated aim is to provide pricing transparency and connect buyers and sellers and become the global go-to marketplace for trading drinks online.

Despite strict regulations dictating how tobacco products are sold in UK retail outlets, as our Tobacco feature reminds us, tobacco remains a key part of convenience stores’ offering, with four out of five independent retailers acknowledging its contribution to the success of their business. This continued demand feeds through to the wholesale sector, with cash and carries and delivered wholesalers well placed to profit from sales of tobacco and smokers’ requisites, and also sales of e-cigarettes, the fast growing product category targeting smokers who are trying to give up but still want their nicotine fix.

Staying with tobacco and related products, Palmer & Harvey is one of the country’s strongest wholesalers in this category. But lest we forget, they also sell huge quantities of alcohol, confectionery, chilled, frozen and frozen groceries and convenience goods. As we see more wholesale transactions being carried out digitally over the next few years, the P&H team are clearly determined to grab their share of the spoils. In our Quote Unquote section Edmund Chartier, Ecommerce Manager at Palmer and Harvey explains how his role includes enhancing P&H’s transactional website, with the aim of making it the most accessible and straightforward to use ecommerce site in the wholesale sector.

Have a successful spring

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