One of the biggest challenges was working with suppliers to secure the best terms for our new look Thresher outlets.
The multiples' retail prices and advertising have been highly competitive, but suppliers have been responsive to our needs.

What major initiatives have you been involved with at First Quench?
We have been developing long-haul supply chain management, consolidating overseas supplier deliveries to single local warehouses for more efficient distribution.
We are exploring e-auctions as a means of buying from suppliers. The benefit of e-auctions lies in the cost savings to be made.
And we have been working on EPoS based central stock replenishment, enabling us to forecast product sales on demand and improve instore availability.
We hope the system will be operational by 2004.

How have suppliers responded to the instore positioning and promotional activity for the new look Thresher outlets?
Our strategy calls for clearer ranges, merchandised on equipment which gives products improved visibility.
We have introduced improved product planograms, special holders for wine bottles and new equipment for displaying beer to make it more accessible.
Suppliers can now get products on to the shop floor in a clearer way. Their response has been very positive.