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LONDON — Ireland convenience store chain Topaz won the NACS Insight 2015 International Convenience Retailer of the Year Award for its Re.Store convenience forecourt concept. The award was presented during the NACS Insight Convenience Summit — Europe in London on Thursday.
With more than 330 locations across the country, Topaz is Ireland’s largest fuel and convenience brand. Topaz opened its Re.Store concept at its Manor Stone Ballacolla forecourt, located at junction 3 on the M8 Dublin to Cork Motorway, in January.
According to NACS, the Association for Convenience & Fuel Retailing, competition was especially fierce for this year's award, with nine finalists vying for International Convenience Retailer of the Year: four from Ireland, two from the United Kingdom and one each from Norway, Switzerland and Argentina.
The trade group singled out Topaz’s Re.Store for its impressive array of foodservice items. Customers can choose from a variety of fresh options such as salads and sandwiches, as well as gluten-free foods and protein-rich porridge pots. The store’s coffee program, complete with trained baristas, is also a key contributor to Re.Store’s bottom line, accounting for one-third of coffee sales.
“Topaz demonstrates that great, nutritious and healthy foods are meeting today’s shopper needs along with traditional convenience store offers," said Henry Armour, president and CEO of NACS. “This is a movement taking shape across the globe and we are thrilled that companies such as Topaz are leading the way.”
TECHNOLOGY, SUSTAINABILITY APPLAUDED
Topaz was not the only company to take home hardware Thursday. During the second-annual NACS Insight Convenience Summit — Europe in London, SPAR UK grabbed the inaugural Technology Implementation Award, while Musgrave Group earned the inaugural Sustainability Retailer of the Year Award.
SPAR UK was honored for excellence in the implementation of innovative and outstanding IT solutions within the convenience retailing industry.
“Key learnings from world-class peers such as SPAR help our global convenience retail community innovate and develop in the technology arena, driving operational efficiencies that deliver cost savings and exceeding customer expectations during their shopping occasions,” said Armour.
Musgrave Group was awarded for its leadership in sustainable resource strategies and inspiring other businesses to implement sustainability initiatives of their own.
“The dedication Musgrave Group has shown to enhancing the communities and people it serves is a great example of sustainable and environmentally conscious best practices, and even more exciting is that we have the opportunity to share Musgrave’s endeavors with our global convenience retail community,” Armour added.
Since 2009, the NACS Insight International Convenience Retailer of the Year Award has recognized excellence in convenience and forecourt retailing on an international stage and celebrates the best convenience retail formats from around the world. Retailers are judged across key criteria including format innovation, range, people development, customer service initiatives, corporate social responsibility, technology and results.
Founded in 1961, Alexandria,Va.-based NACS has 2,100 retail and 1,600 supplier member companies, which do business in nearly 50 countries.