FAQs

  1. General Nisa
    1. • When & why was Nisa formed?
    2. Nisa was formed in 1977 to protect the interests of independent retailers against the influx of the major multiples. Since its launch, Nisa has ensured the success and survival of thousands of independent retailers over the past 35 years and is now the UK’s largest distribution and services organisation for independents.
      • Nisa’s Chronology
      • 1977
      • Dudley B Ramsden (former chairman) and Peter Garvin form Nisa’s (Northern Independent Supermarkets Association) with 30 retailers and a total turnover of £20 million, running the business for the next 11 years from a meeting room at The Crown Hotel, Bawtry and their respective companies offices
      • 1984
      • Nisa opens its first central distribution depot – 10,000 sq ft based in Milton Keynes
      • 1987
      • Wholesale division - Today’s Group formed and merges with the retail division to become Nisa-Today’s. Today’s Group members left Nisa-Today’s in 2012.
      • 1990
      • Scunthorpe Central Office opened by HRH Princess Anne along with grocery central warehouse and distribution facility
      • 2000
      • National Distribution Centre for Fresh and Frozen is opened in Stoke-on-Trent
      • 2001
      • Premier Service – six-day-a-week delivery on temperature-controlled products
      • 2004
      • New Nisa corporate image launched
      • 2004
      • Nisa embarks upon new group strategy to compete against the multiples
      • 2004
      • Most sophisticated Order Capture System in the group’s history – Retek – is launched
      • 2004
      • Second fresh and frozen National Distribution Centre opens in Harlow, Essex
      • 2005
      • Win Ian MacLaurin Award for Supply Chain Excellence at IGD Food Industry Awards
      • 2005
      • New 625,000 sq ft ambient distribution warehouse opens at Foxhills Industrial Park in Scunthorpe, amalgamating Nisa’s former two existing warehouses on the site
      • 2006
      • Right Honourable Alan Johnson MP, Secretary of State for the Department of Trade & Industry officially opens Nisa’s new ambient warehouse
      • 2007
      • Dudley Ramsden retires from his chairmanship of the company AGM on 28th November and becomes life president
      • 2007
      • Neil Turton appointed chief executive officer
      • 2007
      • Nisa commences build of new offices on Normanby Enterprise Park, representing £3.75m investment
      • 2007
      • Nisa named ‘Symbol/Fascia Group of the Year’ at the Retail Industry Awards
      • 2007
      • Group ranked number one retailer in the UK convenience/high street channel in a national feedback study of blue-chip suppliers on the operations of their customers - The Performance Monitor ‘Mirror’ Programme, conducted by The Advantage Group.
      • 2008
      • Nisa moves to new offices on Normanby Enterprise Park named the Member Support Centre.
      • 2008
      • Win ‘Best Beers, Wines & Spirits Retailer’ in national CTP Awards voted for by 28,000 local store shoppers.
      • 2008
      • Nisa enters the Republic of Ireland (March).
      • 2008
      • Mark Pullen is appointed new non-executive chairman of Nisa.
      • 2008
      • Nisa ranked top in in the UK convenience/high street channel in The Performance Monitor ‘Mirror’ Programme for the second year running.
      • 2008
      • Nisa’s Member Support Centre is opened by co-founders Dudley Ramsden and Peter Garvin. The launch is attended by Nisa’s Holdings Board directors and special guests from the business community.
      • 2008
      • Nisa’s EPoS system epositive is launched and achieves over 100 installations in its first year.
      • 2008
      • The Making A Difference – Locally charity is launched assisting more than 2,000 retailers in donating money to local charities and good causes in their communities.
      • 2008
      • Nisa launches its brand new ‘Store of the Future’ symbol group format in Maylandsea, Essex.
      • 2009
      • The Making A Difference - Locally charity raises £1 million in its first year.
      • 2009
      • Nisa launches a new corporate logo to freshen its brand and ensure that the company remains competitive in the current marketplace.
      • 2009
      • The company announces that it has awarded its 2012 supply chain contract to DHL.
      • 2009
      • Nisa expands its business in the Republic of Ireland with recruitment of Irish symbol group ADM Londis.
      • 2010
      • Nisa symbol group named Best Symbol Retailer 2010 at him!’s Convenience Tracking Programme Awards.
      • 2010
      • Nisa launches its first national press advertising.
      • 2010
      • Nisa launches new strapline ‘Making a difference locally.’
      • 2010
      • Nisa launches its first national television advert
      • 2011
      • Nisa opens new Scottish depot in Livingston.
      • 2011
      • Nisa symbol group named Best Symbol Retailer 2011 at him!’s Convenience Tracking Programme Awards.
      • 2011
      • Nisa wins Symbol/Fascia retailer of the Year at the Retail Industry Awards
      • 2012
      • New Loco symbol group launched
      • 2012
      • Nisa launches its second TV advert
      • 2012
      • In 2012, after 25 years as part of the same group, a number of Today’s Group wholesalers left to form Today’s Wholesale Services Ltd.
    3. • What is Nisa’s ownership model?
    4. Nisa’s is owned by its members - each holding up to 100 shares – and run solely for their benefit. The group negotiates the lowest cost price of products for its members and provides them with the most efficient supply chain by strategically using their combined turnover powerbase. The member-owned status of the company means the member always benefits, particularly through the day-to-day trading terms and surplus profits that are reinvested back into the company.
    5. • How many members does Nisa have?
    6. The group has over 1134 registered shareholders operating over 4,000 stores.
    7. • Does Nisa own any stores?
    8. No. The beauty of Nisa is that it allows independent retail and wholesale members to join the group without sacrificing their independent status. They benefit from the group’s products and services whilst maintaining full control of their store or depot.
    9. • What services does Nisa provide to its members?
    10. Nisa provides an extensive range of products and services to its members including the most sophisticated IT ordering system in the independent sector, a competitive, extensive own label range, a comprehensive support package covering retail store development and consumer marketing campaigns - including the distribution of five million personalised consumer leaflets door-to-door every three weeks throughout the UK - and a department dedicated to negotiating the best possible prices on all its members business service needs. The group also provides its members with the most extensive business and marketing package in the independent sector, helping them to compete successfully against the national supermarket chains.
    11. • What are the benefits of Nisa membership?
    12. Members of Nisa are owners of the business and pay an annual subscription or weekly payment - whichever best meet their needs. In return, they receive the following benefits - the essential services they need to help make their business successful:
      • Award-winning national distribution chain
      • Award-winning Symbol Group
      • Consistently the lowest cost and widest range of goods in the independent sector
      • The freshest products the independent sector is able to provide, through its specialist distribution network delivering up to six-days-a-week, across more than 3,000 chilled and frozen lines, supported by in excess of 9,000 ambient lines
      • Five million personalised consumer leaflets delivered door-to-door, every three weeks, available in three different pricing bands specifically tailored to appeal to each individual member’s customer base - whether they are supermarket, high street or convenience stores, Nisa is able to provide a solution for every member’s needs.
      • Free retailer magazines such as Your Focus & Your Consortium
      • Free Category Management online for on-shelf ranging and space allocation
      • The services of skilled and experienced fresh food development and business development managers to help members maximise the trend towards healthy eating and derive the greatest benefits from their membership of Nisa
    13. • What is the composition of Nisa’s Central Distribution service?
    14. Nisa has a 625,000 sq ft (17 acres) ambient warehouse in Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire – a £30m investment launched in October 2005. The warehouse consists of 47,000 bulk and picking locations and two million cases of product.

      The group also has a 165,000 sq ft temperature-controlled depot in Stoke-on-Trent, an 80,000 sq. ft. temperature-controlled depot in Harlow and a 110,000 sq ft, distribution operation in Livingston, Scotland.

      Nisa’s Central Distribution service delivers 108m cases per year to over 4,000 points across the UK.

  2. Nisa Direct to Store
    1. • What is Nisa’s Direct to Store?
    2. The Direct to Store department works exclusively for members delivering benefits across a whole range of categories that they may need for the day-to-day running of their businesses. Since the department was formed in 2001 it has built strong relationships with many suppliers and as a result can help members manage their overhead costs, drive increased revenue opportunities and deliver additional non-core benefits.
      • Utilities
      • Telecoms
      • Card Services – Credit/Debit Cards, Mobile eTop Up & Utility Payments
      • Insurance
      • Cash Solutions – ATMs, Cash Collection & Note/Coin Counting Machines
      • Workwear & Uniforms
      • Refrigeration & Food to Go Solutions
      • News & Magazines
      • Waste Management
      • Floorcare & Cleaning
      • Baskets & Trolleys
      • Tagging
    3. • What is the local sourcing initiative?
    4. The local sourcing initiative was created in January 2008 to help local retailers buy local products but still be invoiced centrally for them. Integrated into Direct to Store mid 2009, as a better fit for central invoicing, they have forged relationships with over 300 suppliers to ensure that members have a wide range of locally sourced products.
    5. • What services does it offer?
    6. Nisa’s Direct to Store areas of assistance include:
      • Utilities
      • Electricity & Gas
      • Card Services
      • Credit card processing & E-Top up
      • Telecoms
      • Mobile & Fixed Line
      • Insurance E.g. shop insurance, public liability insurance, commercial vehicle and healthcare insurance
      • Finance
      • Group negotiating power on member’s behalf for all leading lenders
      • Shopfit Components E.g. refrigeration, shelving, trolleys & baskets, lighting and signage (inside and out)
      • Staff Uniforms - From branded polo shirts to work boots, promoting a consistent, professional image for member stores
      • Cash solutions
      • Cash collection and preferential banking terms
      • Cash Machines
      • Complete range of solutions for both surcharging and non-surcharging, from internal self-fill through to fully managed through-the-wall
      • Waste Management
      • National collections and recycling arrangements
      • Security
      • Instore solutions for CCTV, alarms and access to central monitoring and electronic article surveillance Vehicles
      • Preferential discounts with leading manufacturers – for cars and commercial vehicles
      • Consumer Initiative
      • Additional revenue stream available through ‘Your Kinda Mobile’ consumer website and ‘Your Kinda Energy’
      • Fore Partnership
    7. • What benefits can it provide?
    8. Nisa Direct to Store offers considerable benefits to Nisa members:
      • Group negotiating power to drive value
      • Reduced overhead costs
      • Saves members time and provides reassurance that they have professional support
      • Increased instore revenue opportunities
      • Added-value consumer initiatives
      • Legal compliance advice and assistance to help members cut through the jargon
      • Helps to make members’ businesses more efficient
      • One point of contact offering access to strategic partnerships with an ever-increasing portfolio of leading suppliers
      • Offers a central invoicing facility on services obtained through it, providing members with one bill for all related costs, saving time and money
  3. IT
    1. • What is the Order Capture System (OCS) & what benefits does it provide?
    2. OCS is the best web and EPoS-based ordering system in the independent sector which saves the group’s members time and offers them essential business benefits including greater efficiency, more interaction between the member’s system and their EPoS provider, increased sales opportunities and a single interface point for all Nisa communications - including placing orders. It allows members to track the progress of their orders and generates much-enhanced service levels and on-shelf availability. In addition, the system allows members to select and download the appropriate pricing band for their store when ordering, from one of three pricing bands specifically tailored to appeal to each member’s customer base - whether they are supermarket, high street or convenience stores.
    3. • What benefits does NT Net provide?
    4. NT Net is a safe, high-speed Internet connection for members which prevents computer viral attacks and improves electronic efficiency. It provides a secure connection from the member’s EPoS systems to OCS and was launched in response to member feedback for web-based virus protection.As well as providing members with the option of full access to the Internet, it allows them to connect securely via the head office infrastructure, giving them full Internet security. This effectively means that their computer is remotely linked to the head office network, allowing maximum data security and protection against Internet hackers and viruses.
    5. • What benefits does it provide?
    6. The benefits provided by NT Net are:
      • Totally secure access to the Internet through a Virtual Private Network, exclusive to Nisa
      • Free Internet security
      • Centralised credit card payment gateways
      • Free basic set-up, including setting up NT Net
      • Reduced transaction costs due to secure credit card payment gateways
      • Future platform that supports delivery of streaming radio and video
      • The ability to restrict access to certain sites and file types, such as adult websites or files that may potentially contain viruses, through a content filtering facility
      • Allows a group of stores to create their own private site-to-site network to share files
      • No premium rate numbers to call for support and no dial-up charges
      • Facility to view CCTV footage remotely for an extra fee per month
      • Guaranteed bandwidth and uptime
    7. • What is epositive?
    8. epositive is Nisa’s EPOS system, owned by and developed for the members. It is a highly scalable solution based upon a robust and modern technology architecture supporting all common operating systems including Microsoft environments. The software has been designed to offer a fully featured retail business management solution from back office to point of sale linked to Nisa’s corporate network via a secure, high speed Internet connection. It is a functionally rich and versatile system and fully compatible with Nisa’s Order Capture System (OCS) and New Era Trading Terms (NETT) to maximise member rebates.

      epositive has been designed specifically for the independent retail sector to enable small businesses to better compete with the major supermarkets and high street chains.

      The system is menu-driven, fully featured and can be tailored to meet the requirements of a wide range of store formats including multiple sites and specialist retail environments including petrol forecourts.
    9. • What benefits does epositive provide?
    10. There are many benefits to epositive, including better customer service, better control and increased profitability. Fast resilient processing, broadband EFT and self-checkout tills allow members to serve customers quickly, while the automation of time consuming operations allows for more efficient deployment of staff to other areas of the store.

      In addition to the increased customer service functions of the new system, it is intended to ensure improved replenishment of stock, with its suggested ordering facility able to improve accuracy of orders and reduce time spent completing them by an impressive 80%. Its detailed reporting and analysis also means members with the system can better monitor their stocks and sales, being able to track product lines, identify good and bad sellers, and profitable and non-profitable lines.
  4. Marketing
    1. • What marketing support does Nisa provide to its members?
    2. Nisa has a dedicated team producing a wide variety of marketing tools to support the group’s trading activity, helping its members to identify the best possible deals and attracting their customer’s attention. Its marketing support comprises of:
      • Your Focus Magazine
        • Group magazine dispatched to members every three weeks highlighting the best deals to assist in ordering
        • Contains new product features, category reviews & promotional deals
        • Three issues produced for each trading area - ambient, licensed and temperature-controlled
        • Special supplements produced for new launches or seasonality e.g. Polish Foods & BBQ products
      • Bulletins
        • Weekly bulletin with up-to-the-minute group news & deals and trading sector relevant information
        • Includes pre-sells, with chances to order excellent one-off deals, including colour pages for all trading sectors
      • Seasonal Brochures
        • Promoting Easter, Summer and Christmas-related products, helping members maximise the huge sales potential of these seasonal periods
      • Consumer Leaflets
        • Five million personalised consumer leaflets delivered door to-door every three weeks, available in three different pricing bands specifically tailored to appeal to each individual member’s customer base - whether they are supermarket, high street or convenience stores
        • Delivery direct to members’ customers via Royal Mail, Solus or newspaper distribution
      • InStore Magazine
        • A free customer magazine produced exclusively for members in the supermarket pricing band and issued to coincide with the key selling periods
        • Highlights key products and packed with features, recipes and competitions, offering added value to customers
      • Point of Sale (PoS)
        • Bright, eye-catching PoS to attract customers and drive sales across three main trading sectors - ambient, licensed, temperature-controlled - and three pricing bands – convenience, high street and supermarket
        • Posters, stack cards and three sizes of shelf talker produced in full colour, every three weeks
      • Nisa FM
        • Seasonal, digital satellite in-store radio music station with multiple options, playing advertisements tailored to consumer leaflet promotions and updated every three weeks
        • Available across all three pricing bands
      • Member Press Advertisements and store opening leaflets
        • Design and production assistance for individual members taking newspaper advertising locally, or requiring a leaflet to promote a new store opening
        • Huge selection of product images available for download
  5. Trading - Fresh & Chilled
    1. • What fresh and chilled trading support does Nisa provide to its members?
    2. With the Government’s focus on obesity and numerous TV programmes promoting the benefits of healthy eating, there’s never been greater demand from consumers for high quality, good value, fresh food.

      For this reason, Nisa has developed a dedicated and complete chilled and fresh food solution for its members. This covers order receipt, warehousing, transport and customer services and a delivery service up to six-days-a-week (Premier Service) on chilled and frozen products - including fresh milk, produce, meats, sandwiches and even flowers – and national distribution based on a 48-hour delivery cycle. In addition, the group offers carefully selected seasonal ranges such as Christmas and barbecue products for Summer, helping members to capitalise on the fresh, chilled and frozen opportunity during these key periods.

      In addition, Nisa provides essential marketing support for its members, negotiating full promotional programmes and the production of a tailored consumer leaflet delivered door-to-door to five million households throughout the UK.

      This, combined with the group’s Planogram facility - a free online web tool which advises on the space and layout members should allocate to products in their stores and ranges they should stock, based on their location, size and demographics – ensures members maximise the opportunity presented by the continued growth in chilled and frozen food.

      The group also has a number of field-based fresh food development managers across the UK, dedicated to visiting member stores and advising on fresh food merchandising, stocking and ranging to make the maximum impact to their customers.
    3. • What benefits can members derive from it?
    4. Nisa’s chilled, fresh and frozen food offering presents a host of benefits to its members:
      • ‘Best in Class’ temperature-controlled chilled distribution division operating at 98% service level
      • The temperature-controlled warehouse operates stockless, ensuring that all product is made to order and is of the maximum freshness
      • Independent sector’s greatest choice of quality fruit & veg - 300 products from a full range of over 3,000 chilled and frozen lines
      • Highly competitive ongoing pricing on both branded and own label products
      • Daily timed windows to meet individual member delivery needs, up to six-days-a-week via the Premier Service
      • ‘One-stop-shop’ distribution service - no need for van sales and numerous visits to the cash and carry, saving huge amounts of time
      • The best deals available with over 200 promotional offers every period
      • Superb promotional package across the range every three weeks, including Focus magazine highlighting key products and deals, PoS material and consumer leaflets
      • Dedicated in-store consumer magazine for larger members to heavily promote product offers
      • Providing members with a point of difference, product quality and competitive pricing through offering over 500 own label lines
      • Helping to maximise store sales through full market reviews, category information, ranging and space plans
  6. Trading - Ambient
    1. • What ambient trading activity does Nisa provide for its members?
    2. Nisa has an extensive ambient range of over 9,000 products, incorporating licensed and tobacco products, a high quality, own brand range under the ‘Heritage’ label and an ‘Every day low price’ range under its ‘Value’ brand. In addition, the group also has an award-winning range of private label licensed products marketed as ‘Cellars International’.

      The group has a massive 625,000 sq ft warehouse (17 acres) - the largest ambient distribution capacity of any organisation in the independent sector - at its central office in Scunthorpe, which is situated close to major motorway links and ideal for efficient distribution.A second ambient warehouse has also been introduced at Livingston, helping to provide a greater service to members located in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

      As with fresh, chilled and frozen, ambient trading activity is supported by a heavyweight promotional programme - including the group’s consumer leaflet, delivered direct to consumers through thousands of participating retailers – and the group’s digital in-store radio facility, Nisa FM.
    3. • What benefits does it provide for members?
    4. The main benefits of Nisa’s ambient offering in addition to the benefits for chilled and frozen, are:

      Recognition of different trading styles with the availability of three different pricing bands, specifically tailored to appeal to each individual member’s customer base – whether they are supermarket, high street or convenience stores. Ranges, pricing and promotions are also all geared accordingly.

      Price Check strategy - a scheme for supermarket members covering several hundred products price-matched against Tesco, so larger members can show customers how good their deals are and compete effectively against the multiples
      • Centrally negotiated drop shipment terms for bread, milk, home entertainment, greeting cards, services, reducing costs and saving time for members
      • 1st4New initiative that ensures members are first on the street for major new product launches
      • Members’ website offering up to the minute trading information and special deals
  7. New Era Trading Terms (NETT)
    1. • What is NETT?
    2. Nisa also runs an optional trading scheme for the benefit of its retailers called New Era Trading Terms (NETT) - an initiative which offers members an additional rebate in return for their support of key group initiatives and significant cost savings.

      Members participating in the scheme allocate their stores into one of three trading tiers - convenience, high street and supermarket - based on their target audience, location and competition.
      The initiative enhances the buying power of the group and improves deals and margins for the members. It has been widely adopted and has generated considerable sales for members. Millions of pounds in rebates have been paid out to participating members through this scheme and all members have to do to qualify is:
      • Support the group’s consumer leaflet
      • Regularly purchase from a core product range of best selling products
      • Assign EPoS data rights to the group to allow for product recommendations to be made to members
      • Commit to the group’s 1st4New scheme, an exclusive scheme to stock brand new products to market
      • Ensure that promotion volume does not exceed 60% of total volume
      • Terms correct at time of going to press
    3. • What are the benefits of NETT?
    4. The key benefits of NETT are:
      • Offers additional rebates for supporting key group initiatives
      • Provides a tailored product range for member stores, ensuring the greatest customer impact
      • Rewards members for loyalty
      • Increases supply chain efficiencies
    5. • What is New Era Gold?
    6. Following the success of New Era Trading Terms (NETT), Nisa launched New Era Gold (NEG) in July 2009. NEG is specially designed for those existing members that already qualify for NETT and can guarantee 100% compliance with every aspect of the scheme. In return, members trading on the NEG package can expect additional benefits to those enjoyed through NETT, such as additional rebates for supporting key group initiatives and an increase in supply chain efficiencies. Members trading up to NEG will agree a set of rules in addition to those standard to NETT, in return receiving excellent additional benefits.
    7. • What are the rules of New Era Gold?
    8. Members must:
      • Have achieved current Loyalty Commitment Rebate (LCR) for the last two quarters
      • Agree to an extended core range by store size beyond the current NETT range
      • Purchase all core range lines quarterly – these are mandatory and must be stocked without exception
      • Accept allocation of appropriate new products by store size and continue stocking for a minimum of 12 weeks to establish sales patterns
      • Create ‘off shelf’ display of Gold partner leaflets featured promotional lines as required by trading team
      • Allow NEG suppliers to offer sampling/instore demonstrations from time-to-time as requested
      • Support themed promotion activity by placement of PoS/displays and ensuring high visibility
      • Support new Nisa ‘Fresh for Less’ pre-packed produce launch
    9. • What are the benefits of New Era Gold?
    10. Members will receive:
      • An additional 1% of selected NEG supplier ranges
      • Additional Group Services benefits as negotiated from time-to-time
      • Allocated new products at a special introductory price
      • Continued LCR at the current rate
      • Allocation of special short term promotions
  8. Nisa Symbol Group
    1. • What is the Nisa Symbol Group?
    2. The award-winning Nisa Symbol Group was launched in 2003 and there are now 820 Nisa fascia stores throughout the UK deriving significant revenue increases, cost and trading benefits through its membership. In addition, all Symbol Group members qualify for an additional Symbol Group development rebate, simply by operating to the highest store standards.

      The Symbol Group team works closely with members to lead new and existing store design, layout and conversion to the Nisa fascias, of which there are two different store formats available to suit the member’s specific location, size and customer base.
    3. • What store formats are available under the Nisa fascia?
    4. The two different store formats available to suit the member’s specific location, size and customer base.
      • Nisa Extra
        • For stores in excess of 3,000 sq ft
        • Fitted to Nisa highest specification
        • Providing the very best in convenience retailing
      • Nisa Local
        • For the Symbol store of up to 3,000 sq ft
        • Based in a busy location
        • An ideal package for strong community stores
    5. • What is involved in a typical store conversion to the Nisa fascia?
    6. Firstly, a Nisa Store Survey is undertaken. This examines - in great detail - the demographics and age profile of customers in the catchment area of the store. It also establishes a ‘competition rating’, including competitor pricing and store facilities assessment.

      The existing store layout is then assessed based on the results of the survey and altered where necessary on a bespoke basis and in close liaison with the member.

      The Symbol Group development team works closely with a number of high quality shopfitters and sign contractors - working to Nisa store specification - to achieve the best possible refit, and the relevant store development manager project manages every job on site with the member. Each conversion is completed to a specified budget and deadline
    7. • What additional concepts and services are available under the Nisa fascia scheme?
    8. The group also offers a co-branding scheme which provides members with the opportunity to combine the heritage of their own name, with the national Nisa brand, and supported by a series of additional benefits exclusive to the scheme.

      In addition, the team provides assistance with store development issues and works with all members to drive sales by enhancing chilled space in order to capitalise on the fast-growing chilled food category. In addition, the team can advise on boosting beers, wines and spirits sales and overall, helping members to strengthen their retailing offer.

      The Symbol Group also provides support in the form of a team of expert merchandisers, providing professional advice to members and helping them to maximise customer impact.

      To help members invest and up-skill their staff, Nisa also offers staff training via third party specialists in the form of its Retail Plus Scheme.

      A mixture of best practice learning and formal qualifications - such as NVQs in subjects related to convenience store retailing like health and safety, store security, food hygiene and customer service - the Scheme ensures members’ stores offer a fast, friendly and efficient personal service to all customers, investing in staff.In 2011 the Nisa symbol group launched several new initiatives to help further improve stores and as a result enhance the service customers receive. The first of these is a mystery shopper programme to help retailers develop an understanding of how their stores are perceived by their customers. Stores are visited once every quarter and assessed on numerous areas including staff uniform and product availability.Furthermore, in collaboration with Serve Legal, all Nisa symbol stores participate in an underage test purchase scheme which checks whether their staff are challenging people that purchase alcohol and appear to look under the age of 25, ensuring members comply with the Challenge 25 initiative.In addition to this, the Nisa symbol group works with RetailPlus to help members’ employees to gain qualifications in different areas of the retail business including age related products.
    9. • What are the benefits of the Nisa Symbol Group?
    10. There are significant benefits to Symbol Group Membership:
      • Award-winning Symbol Group
      • The broadest range of ambient and temperature-controlled products available to any Symbol Group at the lowest cost
      • The strongest promotional support programme in the sector
      • Strong, fresh and vibrant corporate identity appealing to customers
      • Detailed store planning and layout advice to maximise the potential of the store
      • Project management of conversion to the Nisa symbol scheme by a highly trained and skilled Nisa Store Development Manager
      • High quality, cost effective shopfitters and signage contractors working to approved standards
      • Additional quarterly business development rebates based on store assessment
      • Enhanced trading terms, advice and initiatives from specific key suppliers
      • Being part of the fastest growing Symbol Group operating the highest average store size and turnover in the sector
      • For retailers operating large supermarket-style stores or groups of multiple stores with a strong locally-known name, Nisa offers a fully bespoke Nisa co-branded store fascia package
      • Merchandising to Nisa-Today’s Category Management plans by skilled in-house merchandising teams
      • Store launch funday packages tailored to meet the needs of the member
      • Nisa FM, satellite-based radio delivering music and store-specific advertising of Nisa promotions
  9. Loco Symbol Group
    1. • What is the Loco symbol group?
    2. Launched in 2012, the Loco symbol group compliments the already well-established Nisa symbol group and not only provides an alternative fascia option for Nisa proximity stores but it also gives smaller convenience stores an opportunity to part of a symbol group.The Loco symbol group is represented through a strong corporate red and green image and bespoke branding, which will flow through to its staff uniforms and consumer leaflets, and works closely with its retailers to develop their stores both internally and externally.Members of the Loco symbol group will receive strong support from the Nisa member support centre and have access to over 12,000 product lines, 400 three weekly promotional offers and personalised consumer leaflets.
  10. Category Management
    1. • What Planogram facilities does Nisa offer?
    2. Nisa knows that its members main priority is improving sales and increasing bottom-line profitability. For this reason, the group offers its members a free online web facility which advises on the space and layout they should allocate to products in their stores and ranges they should stock, based on their location, size and demographics - maximising the efficient use of shelf space and producing the most eyecatching displays to appeal to the member’s specific customer base.

      Members simply log onto the secure area of the group’s website www.nisaretail.com and complete an on-line form specifying their store type, together with the categories required and size of shelving. Within minutes, they then receive electronically, a ‘virtual’ shelf layout - a ‘Planogram’ - bespoke to their exact requirements and showing the recommended allocation, layout and range of products.

      The Planogram facility is managed by Nisa’s dedicated Category Management team and is available across all chilled, frozen and ambient ranges.
    3. • What advantages does it have for members?
    4. The Planogram facility offers a host of benefits to Nisa members:
      • Designed to increase member sales, it is an excellent starting point for introducing a new category or re-launching an existing one
      • Helps to maximise the efficient use of shelf space
      • Easy to follow for implementing and ordering
      • Produces plans based on the members own fixture details and sizes and can preserve space of up to 25% for local products, manager’s specials etc
      • Keeps members up-to-date with market trends since all plans are reviewed and updated with suppliers and buyers on a regular basis
      • Keeps members up-to-date with market trends since all plans are reviewed and updated with suppliers and buyers on a regular basis
  11. Making A Difference Locally
    1. • What is Making A Difference Locally (MADL)?
    2. The Making A Difference Locally (MADL) charity was developed to provide charitable donations to good causes in members local areas. To view the MADL website please visit: www.makingadifferencelocally.com.
    3. • When was MADL created?
    4. The MADL charity was created in May 2008
    5. • What are the benefits of MADL?
    6. By becoming involved with Making A Difference Locally members will be seen as being a responsible retailer. They will also be able to help add value to the local community, by donating money to their local charity or good cause, whilst also driving footfall and sales instore. It’s a great chance for retailers to give something back to the local community. It will also create loyalty to Nisa members’ and supplier brands whilst also rewarding good causes.

      Independent retailers are at the very heart of their communities and their ability to build solid relationships within it provides them with a great advantage over the major supermarket chains. Members’ local donations will make a real difference to their community and further enhance relationships with the people.
    7. • How does the retailer select which charity or good cause they donate to?
    8. The retailer has the freedom to donate to any registered charity or good cause in their local area, whether it be donating money to a charity or a small sports club which is in need of new equipment, it is entirely up to the retailer.
    9. • How is the money given to the charity?
    10. The MADL Committee, which is made up of Nisa and Costcutter executives, is in charge of writing the cheques which are then sent on to the retailer who will present them to the charity or good cause of their choice. The retailer may also choose to have a fun day to celebrate the donation which they have made.