The National Convenience Show, now less than three weeks away, has published its full programme of interactive events and confirms that its ranks of exhibitors are still being swelled with leading players across all fields of retail. The show, which promises to be 2011’s premier event for convenience retailers, launches on 27 February with a unique, innovative format and is co-located with two already well established industry events; the ACS Summit and The Grocer Lunch.

The programme for the show’s interactive theatre, ‘Live@theCounter’ is published online today and includes debates, tastings, demonstrations, networking opportunities, interviews with key industry leaders and celebrity appearances from Gregg Wallace (MasterChef and Turn Back Time – The High Street) and Jimmi Harkishin (aka Dev Alahan in Coronation Street). The full programme is available from www.nationalconvenienceshow.co.uk/liveevents.

The line up for the show’s advisory centre, ‘Ask The Experts’ is also confirmed today. A broad range of industry experts – from consultancies and associations, suppliers and wholesalers – will conduct free personal one-on-one advice sessions with show visitors on every aspect of convenience retailing. Details of all experts and an online booking system are available at www.nationalconvenienceshow.co.uk/asktheexperts

“That National Convenience Show is more than a simple trade exhibition,” says William Reed’s Managing Director of Events and Exhibitions, Andrew Reed. “We have created an event that offers convenience retailers professional advice, fresh inspiration and direct contact with the business leaders that are shaping the retail supply chain.”

Exhibitor numbers for the show have now exceeded the organiser’s initial estimates and continue to grow. “Take up has been strong since bookings opened but many companies are still signing up, even at this late stage, encouraged by the strength of our marketing campaign and the ‘buzz’ the show is now creating in the industry,” confirms Andrew. Latest to join the exhibitor list are the wholesaler, Musgrave – which will be represented by its key symbol brands, Londis and Budgens – plus PayPoint, Treasury Wine Estates and Florette. “This means we now have four of the UK’s leading symbol groups (Booker’s Premier fascia and Costcutter are already committed partners of the show) while Florette leads the way for a sizeable group of chilled food providers, which is an acknowledged high growth category for the convenience sector.”

There will also be a strong focus on news agency. The Association of News Retailing will host a group stand, where it will be joined by News International, Associated Newspapers, Smiths News, Menzies Distribution and Frontline. “We are inviting retailers to talk to us – and to the category’s key providers – about how they can get more from the sale of newspapers and magazines,” says John Lennon, Managing Director of the ANR. “We challenge them to ask questions, seek advice and think again about what news agency could mean to their bottom line.”

For more information about exhibiting at the National Convenience Show contact Christina Wood, Exhibitions Development Director at WRBM – on 01293 610368 or email Christina.wood@wrbm.com. To register as a visitor go to www.nationalconvenienceshow.co.uk/register

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