The contract to supply the new My Local chain is “hugely important” to Nisa, according to chief executive Nick Read.

The new convenience chain, which will start to be supplied by Nisa when the acquisition of Morrisons’ M Local stores completes on 24 October, will not only provide valuable scale and volume for Nisa, but create a model for independent members to aspire to, Read told C-Store.

“We’re on a journey with members moving from CTN to a convenience offer with fresh and chilled and food to go,” said Read. “We’re trying to educate retailers so we need leaders in this space, and I think (My Local boss) Mike Greene and his team will help us immensely, and there will be a halo effect for members. Nisa members can learn plenty in terms of the cross-fertilisation of ideas.”

The group is undertaking a range-matching exercise with Morrisons stores to be completed by the end of the year.

“We will probably need five or six different ranges for the 140 stores, but overlaid with freedom for store managers,” revealed Read. “We have a central invoicing facility for local sourcing, to give every support to make My Local a local brand, plus we have product innovation through Heritage and our Making a Difference Locally charity scheme.

“I’m excited by the fact the stores come in with great discipline and compliance, the staff are well-trained and standards are fabulous. We have to help our members recognise the bar is being raised when it comes to store discipline.”

Read pointed out that the success that Nisa has had in supplying McColl’s Retail Group (MRG) gives it a good template to follow.

He added: “Part of our new strategy is to attract more chains and specialist operators, and we see the opportunity to attract other groups-within-a-group to Nisa.”

Nisa will hold a members’ AGM on 25 November to vote on changes to its constitution. The board has identified key changes it would like to make to Nisa’s governance procedures, and will mail its recommendations to members in advance of the meeting.