Upstairs Downstairs in Oswestry is the latest cookshop to join the exclusive buying and information sharing Cook@Group.
The new addition brings the total number of members to 12, trading out of around twice as many outlets.
Members of the group – joining which is through invitation only – meet on a regular basis at suppliers’ showrooms to compare how their businesses are going, and they are also able to secure special deals with suppliers.
“We’ve got more buying power than some of the department store groups, and we’re trying to harness that for mutual good,” founder member Gary Gordon, owner of the Kitchen Kapers chain, told HousewaresLive.net.
Upstairs Downstairs owners Yossi and Raine Gliksman were invited to the most recent meeting as observers and, said Yossi: “We thought it was very constructive.
“Although we’ve been going for 24 years we’ve never joined any buying group because we were always making sure we remained independent without having to give any reports to anybody.”
But he went on: “We’re very grateful [Cook@Group] have accepted us. I feel we have a lot to give to it – we know suppliers on a personal level. And it’s incredibly important to talk to other cookshop owners to know where we stand and how the trends are going.
“The group’s got a very good name amongst the suppliers,” he added; “they know we’re not out there to squeeze them down to the bone.”
The group’s members now extend from Devon across to Norwich and through the south Midlands up to Shropshire.