We hope you’ve all had a good summer and grabbed the chance to get away for a break. With the August Bank Holiday to come, there’s still a bit of time to grab summer sales opportunities before the schools go back. After that, the next big retail event is Halloween, which we preview in our Halloween feature in this issue.

Halloween is reckoned to be the third most significant event in the UK retail calendar after Christmas and Easter, appealing to more than one in five households and representing a huge profit opportunity for retailers. Cash and carries need to do their level best to encourage the convenience retailers they serve to capitalise on the big opportunity to increase sales this October.

The ongoing Tesco-Booker deal is no longer national headline news as the CMA is poring over the deal’s likely impact on convenience retailers in specific locations. But it is still a live concern for independent stores in the 260 or so locations identified as sore spots and the local wholesalers who supply them.

Meanwhile some neighbourhood retailers will definitely be benefiting from the attentions of a supermarket. Morrisons’ plan to supply McColl’s c-stores and newsagents shows their determination to return to convenience after selling their MLocal stores in 2015. Given the Tesco-Booker saga and Sainsbury’s growth coming from c-stores it makes sense for Morrisons to supply independents. And it fuels the debate about what constitutes a wholesaler.

Speaking of wholesalers developing, as we went to press Dhamecha and Bestway, two traditional British wholesale groups announced they are branching into exciting new territory. The partnership between national pharmacy wholesaler Bestway Medhub and the Cambrian Alliance Group is set to benefit independent pharmacies across the UK as Bestway Medhub becomes one of Cambrian’s official supplier partners for generics, parallel imports and OTC pharmacy products.

The Dhamecha Group, the largest and most successful independent wholesaler in the London area and a key member of the Today’s Group, has bought a site in Smethwick, Birmingham for its ninth Cash and Carry depot. The new trade only Cash and Carry is due to open by the end of the year, following Dhamecha opening their first branch outside London in Leicester in 2015.

We’ll be back in the autumn with the September-October issue. See you soon.

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