Triple ‘a’ Foodhall

Triple ‘a’ Foodhall in Nuneaton isn’t just a community hub, it’s actively driving the local area forward.

A labour of love for Shaan Chaudry and his family, the store is a relatively new build but takes in elements from around the world.

Speaking to Convenience Store, owner Shaan explains that the Costcutter-supplied business, which won Large Store of the Year and Convenience Retailer of the Year at The Convenience Awards 2024, drew in elements from sites in Ireland and Canada to make it unlike any other store in the UK.

Triple ‘a’ Foodhall Ice Cream

The family business had been running a Costcutter store in the town for 25 years and when they felt it was time for a refresh, they decided to go big. The new 4,000 sq ft site is a state-of-the-art outlet that combines a strong grocery offering with destination attractions such as a home-made ice cream kiosk and milkshake machines.

Triple ‘a’ Foodhall Bakery

What makes the store so unique is the level of detail created by the team, particularly the design elements that contribute to the store’s ambiance. From the carefully curated lighting to the meticulously designed layout that creates a customer journey, every detail is designed to elevate the shopping experience. There’s a story behind each unique part of the store such as the bakery unit, which was imported from Germany and has a team member working on it all constantly to ensure a top quality offering no matter what time of the day it is. Even the pastry supplier has been painstakingly researched so that it’s the best it possibly can be for the customers. It’s this level of detail that has lead to a 140% increase in weekly turnover since the store first opened in September 2022.

Triple ‘a’ Foodhall Food to go

Taking learnings from Irish stores, Triple ‘a’ Foodhall’s food to go operation is impressive - a gelato counter offering 18 varieties that are made daily on-site, a 25-strong cake counter, an outstanding bakery range, quality salad bar where salads are freshly prepped in front of customers and a hot offer that includies gyros, rotisserie chicken, and stone baked pizzas.

Taking over one entire wall of the store, the food to go area is opened out to provide theatre to customers. “When we designed our new store, we ensured that the kitchen was completely ‘open’, so customers can enjoy watching their meals being prepared and cooked. This gives the store great theatre and a vibrant, modern feel to the store and our customers love it.”

Massive investment has been made in this area as Shaan isn’t willing to cut corners. “We could have saved some money on a regular pizza oven but we wanted it to be special so we spent extra on a stone-baked oven that gives the customer extra quality,” he explains. “We’ll still have a pizza offering for a cheaper price point if that’s what the customer wants but there’s an opportunity for them to trade up.”

Customer service is also a major priority for the 39-strong team. As well as personalised uniforms with the Triple ‘a’ branding, at busy times a member of staff will be present at the door as a greeter to help customers with any queries they may need or flag up new products or promotions.

As well as that, the team is challenged to look at the store from a customer’s perspective, and a member of staff does a full walk around of the store every hour to look at things as a shopper would see them, including areas such as the shop floor and shelving.

Triple ‘a’ Foodhall Wine

It doesn’t overlook everyday shoppers though. Triple ‘a’ Foodhall was one of the first UK stores to adopt the Bargain Booze brand as a ‘store within a store’ concept and the Bargain Booze section accounts for around 20% of the store in terms of space, located within a double-sided aisle. According to the team, the Bargain Booze proposition brings specialist knowledge, an incredible choice of beers, wines and spirits, alongside immense expertise in the latest drinks trends, brands, and associated offers.

The store is a big champion of local produce and even used previous availability issues as a means to push that agenda forward.

“When there was an increasing challenge for sourcing certain products, we looked to source products from alternative suppliers, and we engaged very strongly with local wholesale markets to ensure not only did we keep products on shelves, but they aligned to our strategy of ‘as fresh as possible’. “This supported our ethos of buying from local suppliers, which in turn helps the local community. It also gives additional interest and awareness in the local supply chain.”

It has resulted in a strong focus on local produce. “We have massively increased our ‘buying local’ strategy, buying our meats for our meat section which is a farm shop style offering, from a local partner whose meats are also grown and slaughtered locally. We buy milk for our milk station from a local farmer and the cream for our gelato comes from a local dairy. Our customers like buying local – it immerses us in the community and it’s putting revenue back into the community.”

Triple ‘a’ Foodhall Salad Bar

As well as creating a store that people are willing to travel to, the Chaudrey family have been working hard to help their communities. As well as organising a breakfast club for the local school, they purchased a disused church that was across the road from the store and made it available to the community and they hold regular tasting days at the store for local suppliers. A massive car park at the back of the store also provides the perfect space for community day that provides yet another reason to visit Triple ‘a’ Foodhall and Convenience Retailer of the Year 2024.