Britvic is working with wholesalers to reinvigorate the soft drinks category and grow value throughout the entire supply chain.
At the heart of this approach is a transformational project with A F Blakemore’s Cardiff depot. Britvic is collaborating with the wholesaler to identify opportunities for extra sales through conventional wholesale disciplines and innovation. Soft drinks offer a high profit margin to wholesalers, retailers and leisure operators, but the market is evolving rapidly and getting the category right is crucial.
Soft drinks are changing
What people are drinking is changing, along with where they are drinking. “We’re seeing a huge and quite rapid shift towards no and low-sugar drinks in the market,” says Trystan Farnworth, Commercial Director for Wholesale at Britvic. There is also a gradual shift away from grocery and into the dining out environment, he says. “Areas like foodservice and casual dining are very important to the sector and that’s where we’re seeing the fastest growth.”
Responding to the market
Britvic listens to wholesalers continuously as part of its account management process. This includes conversations at board level with the biggest wholesalers, as well as at account manager level and at depot level through the supplier’s field sales teams.
“Often that’s where our best ideas come from,” says Britvic’s Trystan Farnworth. “We measure the way we listen through things like the Advantage Group survey, and I’m sure you will have seen Britvic working in a far better way over the last few years.
“This means through improved price-marked pack ranging, smaller pack sizes and more competitive promotions.”
Working with wholesalers
Category segmentation is hugely important in depot and Britvic arranges soft drinks into ‘kids’, ‘family’ and ‘adult’. This forms a key part of how the supplier is working with its wholesale partners, and has played a big part in the layout at the Cardiff depot. A F Blakemore is currently refreshing its partnership with Britvic through its joint business plan.
“We are working with Britvic to ensure we’ve got a targeted plan for our customers,” says Richard Harman, Trading Director for Blakemore Wholesale. “It’s about using insight from both sides of the business to enhance the customer experience and to satisfy the customers’ demands.”
Top Tips from Britvic
Signpost the category clearly and communicate a consistent message on soft drinks with point of sale in depot.
Use Britvic’s data insight to stock the right range with the top selling products. Strike a balance between national and regional favourites.
A major frustration for customers is lack of availability. Work closely with your soft drinks supplier to ensure you maintain 100% availability.
Drive sales of higher value lines. Work with your supplier to highlight these products to customers.
execute NPD launches brilliantly. Your customers are relying on you to show them what’s new. Use aisle ends for bestsellers and NPD only.
For further information on how to get the most from your soft drinks category either call 0845 758 781 or email Trystan.Farnworth@britvic.com
Stay tuned for a special report and video in July’s issue of Better Wholesaling.