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Boreham SPAR 3

Independent retailer Ajay Odedra has moved his SimplyFresh store in Boreham, Essex to Spar.

It comes after Sainsbury’s said it was axing its wholesale division in July, consequently shuttering its ongoing supply agreement with SimplyFresh, which kickstarted in January 2020.

Odedra’s store was one of the five SimplyFresh sites trading under the supplied-by-Sainsbury’s model. The 1,800 sq ft store opened just weeks prior to the Sainsbury’s announcement.

It now operates under the Spar fascia, with AF Blakemore as its delivered wholesaler. It relaunched on 20 September.

“I worked with Spar and AF Blakemore previously so I knew I could rely on their systems and processes,” said Odedra.

“The switchover was quick and efficient with supply being switched on within a week. I am looking forward to working with the team at AF Blakemore again, and together developing and growing my business.”

Blakemore Trade Partners’ new business manager Stuart Ware said: “As an independent family business and one of the UK’s leading wholesale food suppliers, we understand the needs of other independent businesses.

“We are very happy to welcome Ajay and his team into Spar and we look forward to a long-lasting working relationship.

“When an independent retailer joins Spar, they immediately benefit from a better range, quality and margins on ambient, fresh, core branded lines and a huge range of award-winning Spar own-brand products.”

More than 60 stores have moved across to Spar this year and are now supplied by AF Blakemore. There are another 80 stores due to join within the next six months.

“We are seeing independent retailers joining us for our level of support, range and our well known and exclusive Spar brand,” added Ware.

“Retailers joining us benefit from a tailored store package including layout, range, look and feel using our cluster programme, which is specially designed to capture the trade indicated by the store’s demographics.”

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