ACS Calls for Improved Access to Finance for Local Shops

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has responded to a call for evidence into financing and capitalising SMEs, which is looking into how diversifying funding models could improve access to finance.

In its submission to the APPG on Fair Business Banking, ACS outlines the difficulties convenience retailers have faced when trying to secure finance to invest in their businesses, particularly during the pandemic.

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ACS Highlights Impact of Tightening Labour Market on Local Shops

On 15th July, ACS chief executive James Lowman gave oral evidence to the Low Pay Commission (LPC) highlighting the impact of the tightening labour market and rising wage rates have on convenience retailers.

During the evidence session, ACS urged caution on further NLW increases with the labour market in a state of flux due to the furlough scheme, EU exit, Covid testing and isolation and other factors. The LPC’s policy is for NLW to reach two-thirds of median earnings by 2024 - currently projected to be £10.33.

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ACS Sets Out Practical Advice on Isolation to Avoid Unnecessary Staff Shortages

ACS has set out practical steps for retailers to avoid major disruption to their businesses as a result of notifications to isolate from the Covid-19 app.

In the last week alone, over half a million people have been notified to isolate by the NHS Covid-19 app, with many businesses left stuck with significant staff shortages. The Government has confirmed that notifications received through the NHS Covid-19 app to isolate are advisory and not a legal requirement, being part of a separate system to NHS Test & Trace, which does have legal backing.

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ACS: Local Shops Have Responsibility and Opportunity in Healthy Food

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has committed to continuing to promote the progress of local shops in offering healthy options to customers and communities across the UK. It follows the publication of the National Food Strategy, led by Henry Dimbleby, which calls for reform of the food system to help the environment, the health of UK consumers, and the NHS. 

Recommendations made in the strategy include: 

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ACS Refreshes Home Delivery Guide for Retailers

ACS has updated its guidance on Home Delivery to help retailers consider the best fit for their store when it comes to offering the service.

At the start of the pandemic, offering a home delivery option for customers that were isolating, shielding or otherwise unable to get to the store became an essential service for thousands of retailers. During the first lockdown, ACS estimated that over 600,000 deliveries a week were going out from convenience stores to their communities.

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ACS: Long Overdue Energy Reforms One Step Closer

ACS has responded to a consultation from energy regulator Ofgem, reiterating its calls for reform in the small business energy market.

The consultation looks specifically at the introduction of a 14 day cooling off period for microbusinesses to bring their protections in line with that of consumers, as well as an alternative dispute resolution process when there are issues between a business and their supplier or broker.

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Supplier News: Camelot Launches Huge New National Lottery Campaign to Celebrate Players’ Support of Team GB and ParalympicsGB

Content supplied by Camelot: 

Camelot, the operator of The National Lottery, is launching a huge new National Lottery campaign that reminds players that, every time they play a National Lottery game, they’re helping Team GB and ParalympicsGB athletes in Tokyo.

Kicking it all off will be a new blockbuster TV ad which first aired on 7th July, premiering in a 30” spot during England v Denmark, and with further primetime ad slots throughout the week – including during the Euro 2020 Final on Sunday.

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