The Quix fascia has been relaunched by the National Federation of Retail Newsagents as “a fully fledged symbol group” in partnership with Key Lekkerland.

The deal is the third recent victory for Key Lekkerland wholesalers who replace Blueheath as the exclusive supplier to Quix members.

Hugh Graham, sales controller at Key Lekkerland wholesaler T&A Symonds, said: “It is the latest bit of good news for Key Lekkerland after winning the Roadchef motorway contract and our wholesaler Filshill getting Morning Noon & Night’s business in Scotland.”

With Key on board, the NFRN would be able to bolster its Quix portfolio, adding to its tally of 80 stores, said head of commercial operations and marketing Graeme Collins. He said a membership drive was under way although quality was more important than quantity.

“We have resisted quantifying our objectives in terms of the membership. It is more important members have the right attitude, rather than saying we want 500 in the next year.”

Two versions of the fascia, Quix for convenience stores and Quix News etc for CTNs, would be marketed to NFRN’s 20,000 members, he said.

Collins said when the NFRN launched Quix three years ago, it was focused on improving store standards, by assisting retailers in areas such as merchandising
and store layout. However, he said that NFRN had become increasingly aware that it needed to offer retailers full supply support.

Collins said Key Lekkerland had been picked as a wholesale partner because of its expertise in the small store sector, range and competitive pricing. Its wholesalers were able to deliver Quix orders on a next day basis. It also offered low minimum drops to minimise disruption to retailers’ existing supply arrangements in the changeover period. Quix members could even maintain existing supply arrangements alongside the Key Lekkerland minimum deliveries, he said.

Collins said members’ response at roadshows in Key Lekkerland depots had so far been very positive.

Blueheath has just signed a three-year contract to supply non-Quix NFRN members.

A Blueheath spokeswoman said: “Key has been doing things a little longer than Blueheath so that’s OK. We will still supply point of sale, promotions and our Lifestyle-branded range to the rest of NFRN’s membership.”
Anne Bruce