Burton’s Biscuit Company, a major player in the UK biscuit market, is announcing a series of moves to enable convenience and independent retailers to ‘unlock the opportunity’ to grow biscuit sales.

The announcement coincides with the relaunch of Burton’s convenience and impulse sales division, re-named VIP to reflect the importance the company is placing on the key areas of Value, Impulse and Portfolio.

The new division will deliver increased value and growth to customers, and throughout the business, supporting Burton’s strategy of being a focused leader in the biscuit market.

“This is a fundamental overhaul of how we approach the convenience and impulse sector and we will be working more closely than ever before with our customers, across many different areas,” says Jo Harwood, Burton’s Biscuit Company’s Commercial Controller – VIP.

“We’re confident that we will enable them to accelerate growth of the £2.4 billion* biscuits category, the second biggest category in ambient grocery – and one of the most expandable.”

Burton’s commitment to accelerating sales focuses on three key areas:

1) A new approach to the market

2) Increased resources to support and deliver the ‘new’ approach

3) Improved communication with customers

The new approach involves enabling retailers to ensure they fully understand consumers’ shopping habits and develop ‘best practice’ in relation to space and range allocation in-store.

“At the same time we’re giving consumers the opportunity to re-appraise our brands. And the good news for stockists is that biscuits are seen as more permissible than other snacking options such as crisps and snacks,” says David Costello, Burton’s Category and Activation Controller.

“This really is a huge opportunity to grow the category, with Burton’s leading the way through innovation, adding value and engaging shoppers.”

The company will also be working more closely with retailers to stock the optimum range of Burton’s core products (Dodgers, Maryland, Wagon Wheels, Cadbury and Lyons), supported by a pack, pricing and promotional strategy which reflects their own shopper profile.

In addition, Burton’s will be showing that it not only has the most ‘impulsive’ brands in the biscuit category, but also how its core range products are most suited to the key eating occasions of top up, eat now and treat for now/later.

The move builds on Burton’s commitment to set up the business for changing market dynamics, and to capitalise on a growing convenience channel, which accounts for almost 30% of all biscuit sales**.

Burton’s is allocating increased resources and a dedicated team to delivering this new approach. The company will also be working with Reach, the shopper insight specialists, to enhance customer communication and is boosting its trade show presence in 2013.

In addition, more emphasis will be placed on direct communication with retailers via social media, both on the Burton’s website and via Twitter.

“The size and scale of the opportunity is highlighted by the fact that half of all biscuits bought in convenience outlets are ‘treatier’ products**. This is a much higher percentage than in supermarkets, making it an ideal sales environment for the Burton’s portfolio, which is underpinned by the concept of ‘making every day more of a treat’”, adds Jo Harwood.

The formation of Burton’s VIP division also reflects the company’s focus on innovation, quality and pace, and comes as the company continues to outperform the market and its competitive set. As the total biscuits market (excluding savoury) is showing YOY growth of 2.4%, Burton’s Biscuit Company is growing at 8.8%, with a market share of 10.2%*.

Burton’s has also shown that it is doing more than any other manufacturer to deliver category growth with regard to innovation and investment. It is number one both in terms of share of brand innovation (20%*** of market) and advertising support (20%*** of market), higher than any other manufacturer.

* IRI Total Market Share, MAT to October 27, 2012

*** IRI data to November 24th 2012

*** Source: IRI/UM MAT, core sweet biscuits excluding cereal bars

Burton’s Biscuit Company

Tel: 01727 899700


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