Scally’s Daybreak merges foodservice and retail to optimum effect in Cork, Ireland

Scally’s Daybreak service station in Cork City, Ireland, has been repositioned to take advantage of the increasing merging of foodservice and retail, to counteract declines in traditional core categories and give customers more healthy choices.

Daybreak is a convenience store symbol brand that is operated by Musgrave Wholesale Partners in the Republic of Ireland.

Launched in 2006, there are now 217 stores in the group. This includes an even mix of forecourt and neighbourhood convenience stores.

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in 2017 Musgrave commenced a store of the future project to refresh the brand identity and reimagine the brand’s consumer offer.

Scally’s service station in Cork City was chosen as the pilot store for this new Daybreak forecourt store format. The owner of the pilot Daybreak store of the future is Brendan Scally. The shop is located on a busy artery, which links the Kinsale Road Roundabout and Cork city centre, in the Republic of Ireland. The store also operates a Top Oil forecourt on the site with 12 pumps.

Scally has operated a small (750sq ft) Daybreak shop on the site since 2012. In 2017 the decision was made to knock the original shop down and open a new purpose built 3,500sq ft store. The new store opened in August 2017.

The new look store features a distinctive new Daybreak visual identity and store design, which includes a secondary symbol for the brand - a blackbird, one of the first birds to sing the dawn chorus and herald the start of a new day.

In the new store layout, circa 60% of the space is given to food and hot beverages, reflecting the brand’s ambition to reposition and dial up foodservice sales. The key focus in the first half of the store is driving impulse purchases. A 3m coffee dock featuring a new exclusive coffee brand - 9 Grams - developed by Musgrave is positioned close to the entrance. Complementary baked treats are merchandised alongside and to the left is a queuing system merchandising impulse confectionery, crisps and snacks. There is also a grab and go fridge close to the entrance stocking popular lines freshly prepared from the deli. The checkout includes a new ice cream brand developed by Musgrave called Lickety Split.

The deli area trades under the sub brand Munch & Co and includes two cold units and one hot holding unit serving freshly prepared products for breakfast, lunch and evening trade. Barista 9 Grams coffee is available from the deli. There is also a new Musgrave-developed fast food brand called Chipmongers in this area. Opposite the deli is an island unit serving porridge & toppings (morning), soup (from 11.30) and salads. A seating area has been included towards the back of the shop.

The store also has an off-licence and a range of grocery, chilled and frozen and take-home soft drinks, biscuits & confectionery.

With the Munch & Co deli, Daybreak has taken the traditional Irish convenience store and enhanced and extended this offering with better quality ingredients and more unique offerings catering for all day-parts. Highlights include:

• Improved breakfast offer e.g. sweet and savoury topped toast, new hand made hand held snack range, egg pots.

• Healthier options for lunch e.g. signature salad bowls & wraps, mayo free salads, artisan soups.

• Wide range of evening diner options: traditional favourites tapping into the gourmet nostalgia trend; Chipmongers fast food concession.

• Top sellers from the deli are also available from the grab & go fridge, and are freshly prepared in-store daily.

Other key categories at Daybreak include a ‘big night in’ concept featuring drinks, confectionery and crisps; an off-licence offering wines, spirits and beers with fridges stocking international brands and local craft beers; smart snacks and healthy hydration; plus services on the forecourt including Parcel Motel and Revolution laundry service.

In terms of people development and customer service, all store of the future stores are brought through a structured brand engagement process as part of their redevelopment. This starts with initial skills needs assessment by the store’s business development manager to understand resource gaps and agree training needs.

Store owners and key staff are brought on a safari, visiting best practice foodservice establishments. These safaris are about creating excitement and commitment to dialling up the quality of the food offer and customer experience, as well as identifying best practices that can be implemented in-store.

A training plan covering all aspects of the new store offer is implemented with all staff prior to opening. This is conducted by a team of Daybreak fresh food advisors, and supported as required by third parties (e.g. coffee training).

Customer service training is a key aspect of this and a customer service training module has been developed and is implemented by the Musgrave HR team.

New technologies abound too and include free Wi-Fi; dual­plugs (power/USB) at sit-down areas for all devices; a Chipmongers app to allow customer order in advance for collection in­store; a media management system for Chipmongers menu screens to allow updating of menus centrally to support promotional activity; contactless payment; cigarette vending EPOS link; telemetry on coffee dock machines - data supporting centralised monitoring to ensure, for instance, that an appropriate cleaning and servicing schedule is maintained; EPOS sales data retrieval to ensure central measurement of new concepts plus Pulse Data Analytics (a cloud-based analytics solution) implemented to give clearer dashboards and insight for the retailer and also accessed by the store’s Musgrave rep.

The repositioning is working. Since reopening, the performance of the store has been very strong with overall sales up. Footfall has increased by 52% and the food and coffee participation is 34%.

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