Costcutter sets out ambitions as Co-op products come on stream

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All Costcutter stores have now transitioned into the new Co-op/Nisa supply chain and will shortly be receiving their first order of Co-op own brand products.

In common with Nisa stores, Costcutter outlets will initially have access to around 800 Co-op own brand lines for a three-month introductory period, with a wider range available later in the year. Posters and shelf talkers have been produced highlighting the fact that Co-op products are available in-store.

Stores selling Co-op products will be subject to a brand audit, to ensure they maintain the required standards, covering areas such as presentation, labelling, customer communication, date codes and temperature controls. Retailers will not be allowed to sell Co-op products above a defined maximum price level.

Costcutter has lost around 400 member stores in the past year in the run-up to and immediate aftermath of the collapse of former distribution partner P&H, taking the estate to 1,776 stores. However, chief executive Darcy Willson-Rymer said that there was a “strong pipeline” of retailers enquiring about joining the group. A company-owned store trialling a Co-op franchise has seen sales rise by 67%, and this will continue to be monitored before extending the programme to independent retailers, he added.

Willson-Rymer maintained that the company’s Shopper First initiative, whereby retailers can receive precise demographic information tailored uniquely to their individual store catchment, will be a vital tool in forging a point of difference for the symbol group.

“We want to be famous for a proven ability to grow retailers’ sales, using tools like Shopper First,” he continued. “We can help retailers to run their business their way, and make their lives easier by saving them time. We want to continue to build a community of independent retailers where they can learn from each other, and to be the best convenience offer in the marketplace.”

A new, simplified terms package has also come into operation, meaning retailers can earn up to 6% of the value of their purchases in rebates.

Willson-Rymer added: “2017 was a pivotal year for us. It was extremely difficult, but we navigated it, and remain one of the few truly independent companies helping independent retailers.”

Readers' comments (9)

  • Sorry Darcy, but you cannot claim to be truly independent if you are 100% reliant on Co op Group. As for retailers not being allowed to sell above a defined price I think the lawyers might have something to say about that.

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  • I had to laugh at the bit about the store audits. Have you seen the state of some Costcutter shops?

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  • As a recruiter for a large symbol group I can assure Costcutter that the loss in store numbers will only increase in the next few months. My pipeline has nearly a dozen desperate to leave.

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  • If it wasn’t for Nisa then Costcutter would have no business at all now.!
    Very few decent Costcutter stores left and those that are have lost all faith in the senior management.
    Real shame but what’s left will get swallowed up or picked off by rivals.

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  • What absolute nonsense. The Coop got rid of its smallest stores to McColl on the grounds that they could not stock a full own label range but now these little Costcutter shops are expected to prosper by filling their shelves with Coop stuff . Why is nobody pointing out that Coop Group Food Division is actually a very poorly run unprofitable outfit whose return on capital must be almost nil?

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  • Darcy will be out of a job as soon as the Coop consolidates its recent acquisitions. The Coop doesn't need CC, the retailers don't need CC. Time to stop the pretence.

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  • Where's Seasurfer?

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  • Refrusaes yea where is seasurfer probably left Costcutter himself lol he was a big joke always going on Costcutter is the future but soon it be out off business

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  • Well well....and Costcutter have the exclusive license for a new franchise model too??...you are correct on pricing Professor although i suspect that infamous rebate will be stopped for those retailers who break the 'brand guidelines' clause in their supply agreements as Nisa retailers will find out shortly.....on the other side you have Tesco Booker who don't seem to care a jot about the wholesale side...how many Booker customers have seen any of the touted benefits yet?

    Any decent returning store from any symbol will now be fair game to acquire into their estate from the sensible owners who know its time to sell... or wrapped up in a nightmare franchise/supply model... the rest will be left to die a slow death

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