The Arena Face2Face with Alastair Stewart is a key date in the hospitality diary and has seen some of the most influential figures in the industry put through their paces by one of ITV’s most highly regarded newsreaders. This year it was the turn of Matthew Brabin, CEO of ISS UK & Ireland. Held at The Berkeley; a stunning new venue for Arena; the proceedings began with the obligatory bubbles (along with samples from sponsors Costa Coffee and Britvic) and networking, followed by a delicious three course menu from the team at The Berkeley. Then it was onto the main event, the ‘Face2Face’ interview.
Last week, I had the pleasure of going to the Universal Cookery & Food Festival. The show is unique in the fact that it is held in a different location each year – a location chosen on its ‘cheffy’ merits, with this year’s being held in Padstow on the Cornish coast, famous for its sensational seafood which came through in the central themes of the show.
Convenience retailers rely on, trust and act on the advice of other retailers. Ask any convenience retailer and they will tell you the same. As a marketer specialising in convenience retail trade and category communications for leading food and drinks brands, reaching and influencing convenience retailers is what myself and the Jellybean team do day in and day out. Now I could write a few thousand words here in this blog and take up a lot of your valuable time labouring the point about the rise of influencer marketing, the power of peer to peer endorsement and the role of ambassadors, but I won’t. The simple fact is… and I’ll say it again… convenience retailers, rely on, trust and act on the advice of other retailers. So, it stands to reason that food and drink brands should be really collaborating with convenience retailers and making damn sure they get retailers to be the champions of their brands.
Tuesday night saw the great and the good of the sports and leisure catering world gather at Bafta to see who would be walking away with…no, not a Bafta, but one of the highly coveted Sports and Leisure Catering Awards. As the leading foodservice agency we were of course in attendance to hear from editor of SLC Magazine, Joe Bill and enjoy the comic musings of TV’s Mark Durden-Smith, as well as a surprise interview with Roy Westwood from Levy Restaurants (who run the catering at the O2). With sponsors set-up around the reception room, guests mingled whilst trying everything from pastries to pizza, washed down with some cold brew coffee cocktails – delicious!
Yesterday evening I was delighted to attend Arena’s latest event which strayed from the norm, being based in the informal setting of Mercato Metropolitano. Andrea Rasca, the founder opened up the event explaining his vision and hopes of creating a sustainable ‘shopping mall’ with a strong community feel.