Raheel Uddin, senior national account manager for family-owned company Bevelynn, is a persistent man.
Despite joining the company just 18 months ago, Uddin says that by pestering the major multiples for listings, he has increased sales by 20%.
“I am always pestering them and making sure that I am involved and there. I really gun for major customers and I am going to keep hammering and hammering until I am successful,” he says.
Uddin’s persistence has paid off. The Bevelini brand of regional extra virgin olive oils, balsamic vinegars, olives, Greek mezze and Italian antipasto is already listed in Sainsbury, Morrisons, Waitrose and major cash and carries, but Uddin has secured further deals with Makro, Nisa-Today’s, Netto, Farmfoods, Somerfield, Kwik Save and Tesco.
“My main task is to look after the multiples and discounters, but the
multiples are very tough people to work with,” says Uddin.
“You can build a relationship with a buyer but then the buyer moves on. The only way to work with them is to continuously send new lines and make sure that they see you as a company with product development.” Uddin says that his work is split between sales and new product development. A typical week will see Uddin arrive in the office for 8am. “My job is very much office-based. I come in, check my e-mails, go through the customer base to get the orders out and check the sales figures.”
He is also heavily involved with product development. “It is great to create a new line and then watch it go into a store, knowing you have done this yourself,” he says.
Uddin is currently working on deals with Somerfield, Kwik Save and Asda. He has also recently secured a deal with Tesco, which will result in four Bevelini products introduced into the retailer’s top 100 stores. In total, 23 lines will be available in Tesco stores.
Persistence pays off off as family firm scores big listings