Forty years of Bestway

Bestway's original depot

This year, Bestway Wholesale is celebrating 40 years in the wholesale business since its first cash and carry depot in Acton (pictured) opened in 1976.

The anniversary year will begin with a bang with a Best-in promotion throughout January where retailers can drive away in a brand new family car by buying Best-in juices. This will be followed in February with the launch of the group’s first ever reward card for customers.

Younus Sheikh, Managing Director and founding member of Bestway Wholesale has seen it all over the years: “In the beginning it was all about piling high and selling cheap to independent retailers and cafes. Now it is more about shifting perceptions rather than shifting boxes. Although cash and carry is still a major part of the business, delivered wholesale plays a major part with sales of over £650m per annum. The past 40 years has seen the company evolve into a truly national cross-sector wholesaler but has never lost sight of our mission of Building Business for the Independent.”

The group will once again focus on its three core pillars of catering, symbol & club and web & digital during 2016.

Despite the group managing down the number of stores in its Best-one and Xtra Local groups to maintain the integrity of the brands, sales through the 4,050 affiliated stores have continued to increase despite the fall in store numbers. The focus on chilled and fresh will continue in 2016 as will Best-one’s rebate scheme, My Rewards, which offers members up to 5% cashback on purchases.

In digital, Bestway Wholesale will continue with more retailer personalisation through its website and mobile app.

Sheikh concluded: “Forty years ago Sir Anwar Pervez established Bestway as a fledgling wholesaler in London to give better prices and service to small shop owners. Our mission from day one was to build business for independents and now, 40 years on, the group is proud to serve over 200,000 customers from large local authorities to small kiosks from our 63 depots nationwide. As a business we have come a long way but there is still great headroom for growth and we will be fully focused on this in our 40th anniversary year.”