BHETA forum focuses on independent retailing

The British Home Enhancement Trade Association (BHETA)’s next member forum will feature a host of speakers relevant to independent retailing.

The event will be held on March 14 at BHETA’s headquarters in central Birmingham.

Heading the agenda is Vin Vara, owner of The Tool Shop Group: an award-winning independent hardware and tool retailer based in central London. His first outlet was launched in Waterloo in 1997 and now forms the central core of a group of nine stores listing hardware/DIY and housewares products. Vin will discuss his view of the market and highlight the opportunities of ‘doing better business with independents’.

Vin is the 2016/17 incoming president (May) of The British Independent Retailers’ Association (bira) and will share his initial thoughts of his year in office. He will be supported by bira deputy ceo and communications director Michael Weedon, who has a wealth of knowledge of both the independent hardware and cookshop retail sectors.

Other speakers include Steve Collinge, md of website ‘Insight DIY’, which delivers news and commentary for the UK home improvement Industry. His talk is entitled ‘retail prices – the race to the bottom’.

A presentation will also be given by Paul Halliwell, chief operating officer of ‘lifestage trigger agency’ Twenty Ci, which specialises in strategy development, data provision, analysis and customer relationship management.

Paul will debate how the value of consumers varies according to life stage and how better targeting can yield better returns on marketing spend.

BHETA home improvement sector director Paul Grinsell said: “This is a very comprehensive agenda, providing up to the minute insight into the opportunities in the independent sector.

“Anyone not already booked in should contact Sally Hawkins in member services as soon as possible ( We would also be delighted to see non-members as this would be an ideal opportunity for engagement with interesting speakers, networking and getting a sense of what BHETA has to offer.”

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