Summit Speakers


25th April 2017 | NEC Birmingham | Co-Located with NCS

ACS Summit: Speakers

Scott Hartman – Rutter’s Holdings, Inc

Scott is President/CEO of Rutter’s Holdings, operating 66 Rutter’s convenience stores; Rutter’s Dairy, selling products in five states; and M&G Realty. Rutter’s is the oldest vertically integrated food company in the U.S. dating back 10 generations, 270 years to 1747.

Scott started in the family business at the age of 12 working summers. He received his Accounting Degree from George Washington University and MBA from Duke University. He was employed by Price Waterhouse as Senior Manager in Consulting from 1983-1990 and is an inactive CPA.

Scott is past Chairman of National Association of Convenience Stores, Petroleum Convenience Association for Technology Standards, the Pennsylvania Convenience Store Council and Pennsylvania Food Merchants Association. Scott has served on Advisory Boards to companies including Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and First Data. He has served on many local charity Boards including York Memorial Hospital, The American Red Cross and Easter Seals. Scott has also been a guest lecturer at Boston University.

Scott has been inducted into the Convenience Store Hall of Fame, Food Industry Hall of Fame and Convenience Store Technology Hall of Fame.

Tracey Clements – One Stop

Tracey is the CEO at One Stop. She is an experienced customer focused retail leader who has held a variety of roles within Store operations, Operations development, Business transformation, Customer Experience and Marketing. Tracey has proven track record of delighting customers, building and leading large teams and delivering strong scorecard results for the UK’s largest food retailer. She is a highly driven individual whose leadership style is described as customer and people focused, strategic, humble, driven and stretching.

Thomas Ennis – Spar

Thomas began his retail career at 15 and graduated to a managerial position in Superquinn where he was trained and guided by people like Pat Kelly, Cormac Tobin and Feargal Quinn. After meeting with John Clohesy about moving to SPAR, Thomas discovered that SPAR’s ethos was the exact same to his and to this day is the foundation of all his stores.

Kash Khera – Simply Fresh

Kash Khera is the co-founder and MD of SimplyFresh, a UK based Convenience Store Franchise formed in 2009. With a key focus on fresh, FTG, healthy alternatives and store design they have attracted new clients in many sectors.

Before devoting his work fulltime to Simply Fresh, Kash was an independent retailer, having learnt his trade from the bottom up. These stores had always been operated to a very high standard and with a key focus on fresh and chilled, and a great understanding for the local community and demographic they served. This experience was fundamental in the conception of SimplyFresh, and as Kash is now looking at re focusing on company owned stores in London, will be ever more valuable.

SimplyFresh was born out of a shared desire to want something better!

A better product, a better price, a better community and better retailers who care about their customers and the community in which they trade. These are our goals and form the backbone of our company, as we are dealing with many dynamic individuals we will not always live up to these goals, but we should not despair. Rather, let us take up the challenge to bring our reality closer to our vision, the future we will desire for tomorrow is created one step at a time today!


Nick Read – Nisa

Nick Read joined Nisa in February 2015, and has been instrumental in returning the business back to growth and ensuring the business strategy is strong and the model remains viable.

Nick joined Nisa from Thomas Cook, where he shaped the customer experience as group customer service director. Prior to this, Nick also held the position of commercial operations director at Vodafone UK Limited.  In addition to this Nick has experience as customer experience director at Lloyds Banking Group, customer service director at Tesco and was a consultant in Deloitte Consulting’s consumer and retail practice. He started his retail career with Aldi, where he held various roles starting with store operations, culminating as purchasing director.

Jane Milton – Food Industry Expert

30 years’ commercial experience in the industry, has provided Jane with a unique perspective on food from ideation to marketing and given her a strong network globally across the industry.

Jane helps businesses identify their unique assets and capitalise on these. She understands market and industry trends and how they influence new and existing business. Outside the UK, she is accredited to work with Swiss businesses, has worked with trade boards and governments from several European and Caribbean countries and recently with Horticulture Innovation Australia.

Jane has a unique relationship with many UK and Irish supermarkets, convenience groups and food halls through her strategic roles in food industry awards.

She is a non-executive director of several food businesses including some owned by the BBC’s Dragons’ Den Investors.

In 2014 the University of West London awarded her an Honorary MBA for services to the Food Industry.   She is a published author and Member of the Guild of Food Writers. She is currently studying to be a Tea Sommelier with the Tea Association of Canada.  Jane is Chair of Park Royal Business Group; Park Royal has the largest concentration of food businesses in Western Europe.

George Thomson – National Federation of Subpostmasters

George has had a long career within the Post Office, starting work as a Postal Officer in 1979 after leaving school at 18 and serving eight years as a Communication Workers Union Area Officer. He became Manager of Tranent Crown Office in East Lothian and converted it into a four-position rural commercial post office and convenience store, run as a family business.

George was an NFSP Executive Officer for Scotland and served on the Federation’s Negotiating Committee. He was an active member since joining the Federation, serving as Branch Treasurer, Branch Secretary, and Scottish Area Secretary. He still attends many Branch and local NFSP meetings to keep informed of individual subpostmasters’ concerns and problems.

He took up the post of General Secretary in May 2007. In 2016 the NFSP became a limited company, with George as Chief Executive Officer. Since then he has successfully headed up the major national campaign to retain the contract for the Post Office card account, and has become a regular visitor to Westminster as he constantly lobbies to create a viable and sustainable future for the Post Office network.

David Meade – Inspirational Speaker

David Meade is a trainer, facilitator, broadcaster, researcher, and international speaker.  He’s worked with organisations that include Apple, PwC, Harvard in Boston, the Cabinet Office in Westminster, Bombardier, and Bank of America, with whom he works on improving the way they work and perform through comprehensive management, leadership, and operational development programmes.

David is a first class honours graduate from Ulster University’s School of International Business. His work as a lecturer and award winning researcher in business and strategy with one of Irelands leading Universities has built his reputation as one of Europe’s most sought after organisational facilitators.  David’s personal interests have always focused on aspects of organisational psychology, consumer behaviour and choice, and by combining these professional and personal passions with his dynamic and engaging presentation style, David has become known for an innovative style that forces audiences to think critically about the challenges around them.

Raj Aggarwal – Spar retailer

Raj has been a convenience retailer for the last 20 years, winning several industry awards for his stores. His Spar stores offer a wide range of own label and superior chilled quality products to his customers.

Raj has opened a coffee shop/wine bar under the brand of Insomnia which was the first UK franchise and also operates an up-market SPAR convenience store in Market Harborough and one in Sheffield. Raj’s vision for 2016 is to grow his portfolio of SPAR stores and Insomnia coffee.

Avtar Sidhu – Simply Fresh retailer

Avtar Sidhu (Sid) began his working life in software only moving into retail relatively recently. Approximately three years ago he decided that he would like to enter the retail industry and run his own convenience store. He bought a very old fashioned store which, over its 30 year life, had had little or no investment. Sid was determined to incorporate the latest thinking into his store and so after multiple store visits and detailed research, planning permission for a new multipurpose building with business premises and accommodation was granted. Demolition of the old building followed and after a year and a total spend in the region of £750,000 he was open for business.

Sid’s aim was to match his store to the aspirational demographic of his customers and he sees his shop as a mini ‘Waitrose’ with a high quality offer and excellent value for money. Sid loves to trial new and unusual ideas and has enjoyed being a ‘guinea- pig’ for the German company he used for the internal fitting of his store.

James Lowman  – Association of Convenience Stores

James was appointed ACS Chief Executive in November 2006, since when he has grown the organisation which now represents 33,000 local shops. He joined ACS in 1997 and progressed to Public Affairs Director, running all ACS policy work including successful campaigns to preserve Sunday trading laws, to see the grocery market referred to the Competition Commission, and to support members during the transition to the Licensing Act 2003.

During his tenure as ACS Chief Executive, James has re-focused the organisation on lobbying and providing a strong voice for local shops, on advising members on impending legislation and other issues, supporting this work with a strong evidence base through a research programme and offering an industry-leading programme of events and networking opportunities. James also sits on the boards of the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS) and the Association of Business Crime Partnerships

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

Paul Chamberlain – Association of Convenience Stores

Paul joined ACS in March 2007, having previously been responsible for the relationships with retailers through the management of National Account teams within the Magazine and Newspaper industry. As Commercial Director at ACS Paul actively seeks to recruit and retain members across all membership streams through ensuring that maximum value  is gained through membership, as well as organising the most topical and relevant events to provide networking and sharing of best practice across the sector.

Paul is a Business Graduate and started his career in retail at Martin McColls.


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