Buying group Sugro UK is launching a new symbol fascia, Sugro Convenience.

The fascia which has the strapline 'More for less!!' was ready to be rolled out in Northern Ireland through Sugro member O'Reilly Wholesale Confectioners, said Sugro UK MD Philip Jenkins.

"Sugro is a solid name and a good badge to have," Jenkins told delegates at the buying group's annual trade show and business conference in Newcastle last week. "It is the first time we'll be taking Sugro front of house to the consumer, but in the end we thought 'what is wrong with Sugro because, after all, what does Londis or Mace mean?'"

Sugro UK has trialled seven stores under the Nearbuy fascia in the north west, but this is the first time the buying group has embarked on a large-scale launch into symbol retailing. Jenkins said he would maintain the Nearbuy name, but would ensure Sugro Convenience was "rolled out into as many places as possible".

Sugro UK said it had developed all aspects of the stores operating the Nearbuy name, whereas Sugro Convenience would consist only of the fascia and window decorations.

Jenkins said he had not set a target for store numbers as Sugro UK's wholesale members would decide which retailers were best suited to the fascia. "One wholesaler might say 100, and another might say 10, so it doesn't matter how many we have."

He added that Sugro UK had effectively been operating a symbol scheme for a number of years, albeit without a fascia. It had already offered extensive marketing and promotions through its Sweet Break scheme, with 1,300 independent retail members.

"It's all there, but without the badge on the stores," Jenkins said. "It's time to enter the frame. Everyone wants to be part of a symbol group."

Sugro UK volumes were up 11% last year, Jenkins said, adding that £13.1m worth of deals were agreed between suppliers and wholesalers at last week's trade show.