JW Filshill has highlighted community engagement and sharing snacks as key focus areas, as the Scottish wholesaler is on track to increase store numbers from 180 to 200.   

Filshill’s retail sales director, Craig Brown, told RN: “Our ongoing growth has been partly driven by increasing sales of snacks, especially in the sharing formats.

“We have seen a sales increase of 20% in the category, which has been helped by major events, such as the World Cup, and the hot weather. The category is not just a seasonal trend, either, and we’ve seen consistent demand throughout the year. We have also got an extensive range of specialist craft alcohol, which has been popular among customers.”

Mr Brown added engagement between its KeyStore shops and their local communities has also been helpful in the wholesaler’s recent growth. 

“We work closely with local schools and children’s football teams to either help fund any events they have or provide any products they need. It helps generate a positive impression in local communities of the KeyStore brand and the word of mouth helps attract more customers
to our stores.”

The increase comes as Mr Brown said he expected the company’s annual turnover for the year
ending 31 January to grow from £141.9m to £150m. Like-for-like sales for the first half of its trading year have also increased by 10%.

Mr Brown said following the Today’s Group’s Plan for Profit guide has also been beneficial. “We used the guide in stores to make sure we consistently have products which will sell well alongside the most effective ways to merchandise them.”

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