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31st March 2020
The Vox (Resorts World), Birmingham
10:00am - 1:00pm
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Summit20 is an unmissable event for anyone involved with the convenience sector, bringing together retailers, suppliers, and industry experts from around the world to explore the successes and challenges of the industry and discuss new ideas retailers can walk away with.

This year's event, taking place on March 31st at the Vox in Birmingham, will focus on two of the biggest questions facing the convenience sector in the future...

Session One: Are we food retailers? 

In this session, we'll explore how the role of convenience stores is changing when it comes to providing a comprehensive food offer for customers. At a time when many convenience stores are looking into expanding their range of food to go products and investing in areas like bakery, coffee and fresh produce, Summit20 will look at whether this trend is likely to continue and how independent retailers can make a success of food retailing. Speakers already confirmed for this session include Jonny McQuarrie, Managing Director at One Stop, and Nikki Rogers, Food Solutions Director at AF Blakemore. 

Session Two: What's the role of colleagues in the future? 

The convenience sector currently employs over 405,000 people, providing local, flexible and secure jobs for members of the community. But as one of the biggest costs for retailers, and at a time when automation is in the spotlight, the role of colleagues in the convenience sector is sure to change. In this session, Summit20 will explore what working in a convenience store will look like in the future and how retailers can empower colleagues to create a long lasting positive relationship with their customers. Speakers confirmed for this session include Jo Whitfield, Chief Executive of Co-Operative Food.  

In addition to our fantastic line up of speakers, we will also once again be journeying around the UK with ACS Commercial Director Paul Chamberlain to seek out some of the best innovations happening right now in a series of exclusive videos debuting at Summit20. 

Find out more about our speakers below, and secure your place now by emailing Sarah Johnson at for more information on tickets and availability. 

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Event Speakers

Jo Whitfield, Chief Executive, Co-op Food

Jo is Chief Executive for Food at the Co-op. She was promoted to the role after less than a year with the organisation and has devised and led a strategy that is delivering rapid and radical transformation change for the business.  

Jo began her career at Ernst and Young as a qualified accountant before broadening her experience in finance within several companies such as Northern Foods, Matalan and George. She became a key leader at Asda and strengthened her knowledge of retail by taken on many key leadership roles across the business which included operations, commercial and e-Commerce & Strategy across the International business. 
At the Co-op Jo has been an advocate for change while staying close to her values and the values of the business. Jo is a positive, modern leader who has a deep understanding of retail. Since being part of the executive team she has introduced new ideas such as partnering with festivals including Glastonbury and other events such as Parkrun.

Jonny McQuarrie, Managing Director, One Stop

Jonny is Managing Director of One Stop Stores, a subsidiary of Tesco. Jonny was appointed in 2019 after previously being a Retail Director for Tesco Convenience, looking after 1700 Tesco Express and Metro stores and 750 One Stop Stores. Jonny now leads the business driving change and rapid growth.

Jonny joined Tesco in 2002 and has completed a number of roles over the past 18 years including Operations Director across various formats, Stores Director, Store Manager and Nutri Centre GM. 

Jonny has a clear strategy and vision for the business, that will ultimately see the shape of convenience shopping in One Stop adapt over the next few years to match ever changing customer needs. His experience,and extensive retail understanding has proven invaluable in making a successful business thrive. 

James Lowman, Chief Executive, ACS (Conference Chair)

James was appointed ACS Chief Executive in November 2006, since then he has re-focused the organisation on being the strongest possible voice for local shops. He has led a unique research programme that informs ACS’ policy work, launched an industry-leading assured advice scheme in partnership with Surrey County Council, created a new and unique events programme, and increased membership and engagement from all parts of the industry. He has been recognised for his work with outstanding achievement awards from Palmer & Harvey, YIGA, and the Retail Industry Awards. James is a member of ministerial advisory groups including the Future High Streets Forum, the National Retail Crime Steering Group and the Retail Policy Forum. He also sits on the boards of Community Alcohol Partnerships and the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS).

James joined ACS in 1997. He has a degree in Politics from the University of Essex, and an MBA from Kingston Business School.

Paul Chamberlain, Commercial Director, ACS

Internationally acclaimed as the most prolific convenience store visitor worldwide, Paul’s extensive industry knowledge allows him to organise the most topical and relevant events to provide networking and sharing of best practice across the sector. As Commercial Director at ACS, Paul’s role is to understand the issues which impact upon the long-term success and relevance of the convenience sector.  Bringing together retailers and suppliers in a meaningful way to share experiences that can deliver this long-term growth.