I am writing this having just called Spar retailer David Lewis to tell him he made it into the Independent Achievers Academy Top 100 retailers list.

Similar conversations have been going on around me all morning as colleagues deliver the good news to some of the UK’s best independent retailers.

Independent convenience retailLast month, everyone at Newtrade judged an Academy entry, scoring the store against a set of criteria for each category. The purpose was to get everyone in the business involved in the entire process: from judging to celebrating success at the gala dinner in November. Will Hoad, an account manager in RN’s commercial team, said the reason he enjoyed the exercise was because, aside from meeting retailers at industry events, he didn’t often get the opportunity to speak to them about their businesses.

This, for me, is the more significant benefit and what stands Newtrade apart from our competitors: we are passionate about your business and helping you improve it.

We are passionate about your business and helping you improve

Throughout the year, everyone at Newtrade will be working a shift in an independent store. My team planned their visits last week and in September will be travelling the length and breadth of the UK (even Guernsey) working in newsagents, c-stores, fresh specialists, symbols, unaffiliated stores and franchises.

The aim is to help us understand our customers’ businesses better, the challenges you face every day and help us become independent retail experts.

You can read about the 30 lessons my team learned working in your stores in the 17 October issue. And if you’d like one of Newtrade’s independent retail experts to come and work a shift in your store, just let me know.

View the whole Top 100 Independent Achievers Academy list here