The Co-operative Movement has launched the trial of a new look that is to unite all 42 co-operatives under one brand.
As first revealed by The Grocer (August 13, p9), the clover leaf and fascias such as Co-op Welcome, Late Shop and Travelcare are to be ditched in favour of one all-encompassing new banner, The Co-operative.
The first 37 outlets will be under the new branding from Monday, September 12, with another three joining the pilot by the end of next month.
Each arm of the business will have a different colour scheme and a descriptor alongside the new fascia that will cover the movement’s food, bank, pharmacy, funeral and travel
arms. Food stores, which will all trade under the sub-brand Local Store, will have a bright green fascia - chosen for its associations with freshness, healthiness and cleanliness - while banks will be blue, pharmacies pastel green, funeralcare purple and travel outlets orange.
A £500,000 marketing campaign, including press and radio advertising and a direct mail and brochure delivery to 300,000 customers, will support the pilot project.
There will be 20 food stores, two banks, 13 travel, six funeral and three pharmacy outlets involved, the majority of which are in Hull, Northampton, Thame and Kidderminster.
Most of the outlets belong to The Co-operative Group, which has been leading the project, but United Co-operatives, West Midlands Co-op, Oxford, Swindon & Gloucester and Scotmid will also be taking part.
Stores will have a complete refit to encapsulate the new design themes and colours. Strict new operational standards will also be introduced, said Zoe Morgan, The Co-operative Group’s marketing director. “This trial is about a whole lot more than simply putting a new name and typeface above the door. It is a significant project designed to give the Co-operative Movement a more powerful, relevant and distinctive brand.”
A defined set of customer service and offer standards, such as queue length, customer greeting and merchandising, will be introduced to the new stores.
The whole project will be reviewed early next year.
Morgan said: “By presenting a united face, underpinned with strong messages about the way we believe in doing business, we will encourage more people to trade with more parts of The Co-operative and strengthen our presence on the high street.”
Fiona McLelland