As I write this I cannot believe that we are celebrating the silver anniversary of the Asian Trader Awards.
The retail landscape has changed dramatically over the years.
The old retail classifications of grocer, CTN and off-licence have all now merged to make a convenience sector that continues to outpace the market.
Symbol groups now play a much larger role in the sector, raising standards and offering a higher degree of professionalism that consumers have come to expect.
The supply chain is now a well-oiled machine with both delivered wholesale and cash & carry playing a pivotal role in ensuring availability and helping retailers compete.
However the constants that never changes are the incredible dedication and entrepreneurship that retailers continue to exhibit. Year after year the awards throw up new and exciting examples of the skills, innovation and dedication of the independent retailing sector. And that is why we must all come together to celebrate the great achievements of our channel.
It is also a night where we can network, catch up with old friends and establish new relationship. We are grateful to have the cream of the wholesale channel attending the Asian Trader Awards from senior executives from the major wholesaler and symbol operators to single depot owners and their managers.
I would like to urge you to enter your stores and continue to amaze me. If you are a supplier, why not join me in celebrating the success of the convenience channel and meet up with the 'whos' -who' of wholesaler on Wednesday 20th November in Central London.
Ramniklal Solanki(CBE), Editor in Chief
Closing date for the Asian Trader Awards nomination forms is Friday 30th August 2013