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bira conference and awards 2018, speakers, independent retail, retail future

bira Conference & Awards 2018

Date: Thu 10 May

Time: 9.00

Venue(s): Jurys Inn, Watling St, Burbage, Hinckley LE10 3JA

How do independent retailers future-proof their business?

Introducing the bira Conference and Awards 2018; a platform for forward-thinking business education and celebration for the independent retail industry. The unmissable event for independent retailers.


It's time to shine

The bira awards recognise and reward the very best in our industry, showcasing the talent, hard work, innovation and achievements of bira members.

Click on the name of each of the award categories below to view the full description and award winners.

Award categories

Independent retail business of the year award 2018 winners

This award highlights business owners that are looking to celebrate the achievements of their business as a whole and what has made their shop stand out from others on the high street.

Award winners

Winner (Gold) – Aspire Style
Silver – Wild Oats
Bronze – Potters Cookshop
Highly Commended – Two Ducks
Highly Commended – Velvet Exclusive Ladieswear

Independent team of the year award 2018 winners

This award highlights business owners that are looking to celebrate the achievements of their business as a whole and what has made their shop stand out from others on the high street.

Award winners

Gold – Roobarb
Silver – Westgate Tyres
Bronze – Manton Cards

Charitable champion award 2018 winners

This award is for those who sacrifice time, money and support for a cause close to their heart. It recognises those who are the driving force behind international causes or projects and pave the way for a better future in the retail industry and beyond.

Award winners

Winner – Bunns cakes & Bakes Ltd
Winner – Connect Distribution
Winner – Roobarb
Winner (International)- J R Handsford Ltd

Retail employee of the year award 2018 winner

So much of the time, it’s the efforts of specific individuals that drive change to achieve new things and to make a difference within a business. This award recognises anyone from managers to members of the sales team.

Award winner

Sophie Bass from JSJ Projects – Sugar and Ice

Local hero award 2018 winner

This award is for those that work hard not only for their business but for their local community too. We know that local support can make a big difference to independent retail so this award gives something back to those individuals that give extra time and effort to keep the surrounding society thriving.

Award winner

Chris Patterson from Pattersons

Expansion of the Year award 2018 winner
Award winner

Vin Vara from The Tool Shop Group

bira direct awards 2018 winners

Best support for independents – Stax Trade Centres

Supplier of the year (Hardware) – Supreme Imports

Supplier of the year (Cookshop) – EPE International


Lead, innovate, achieve

All entrepreneurs need a break from their work to sharpen their skills. Choose from 12+ interactive workshops and keynote speeches, hear different stories and drop in on a variety of talks provided by experts speakers in the industry.

Explore the most current retailing trends, changing consumer behaviour, and learn how to broaden your businesses digital mix, through engaging breakout sessions provided by the leading experts, who have put these tangible tips to practice.

Help your business to stay ahead of the curb with the unmissable advice from knowledgeable speakers.

Maybe* Social Media Masterclass Speaker, Polly Barnfield, bira conference and awards 2018

Polly Barnfield

Polly Barnfield, CEO of Maybe* will be leading the Bira Training Social Media Training programme. With a huge amount of social media experience in the retail industry, Polly is a fountain of knowledge enabling you to gain the insights to take your social media strategy to the next level.
View Speaker

Payments panel

The future of payments

Retailers need to consider further ways they can reach out and capture their audience by offering more convenient and quicker ways to purchase items. The payments panel will explore some key trends in the payment industry in the UK and what this may look like in the future with some of the UK leading experts in the field.

Technology has opened the door to a new age of purchasing and has altered the payment path for transactions. Frictionless payment plays a key component in today’s shopping experience. We have seen contactless payment, including mobile payment such as Apple Pay, grow drastically as the need for convenience and ease from consumers remains a dominating factor in retailing today.

DASH is delighted to be sponsoring the Future of Payments Panel at the bira conference 2018. DASH is a leading e-commerce and payments-focused digital currency. Dash is digital cash.  With instant transactions and low costs it offers an exciting alternative payment system.

Dash digital, bira conference and awards 2018


A ladder of opportunities

With thanks to our event sponsors for showcasing their commitment to encouraging the independent retail sector.
View all event sponsors