Cash & carry giant Booker plans to start tailoring its offer to suit Scottish customers, after trading director Warren Thompson admitted this week that it was still not performing as it would like north of the border.

In the week Booker was crowned The Grocer's Wholesaler of the Year Thompson said Scotland had been identified as the next area for improvement.

"We have not done a great job here," Thompson told delegates at the Scottish Wholesale Association conference in Dunblane. "We need a different way to operate and manage the business in Scotland."

The wholesaler is setting up a dedicated Scottish office that will have its own independent buying function and the ability to develop Scottish-specific promotional activity. It plans to introduce more local lines as it did in Kent last year. This will also be reflected in the range for its Premier symbol group and retail clubs. The range will also be more tailored to Scottish tastes.

The latest new depot format Booker Extra is set to be rolled out across Scotland.

Thompson gave an open invitation to both suppliers and rival wholesalers to have a look round its depots and discuss the wholesale sector.

Currently 22 of Booker's 173 depots are located in Scotland, serving 41,000 customers a week.

Wholesaler of the Year p30