Blackpool Pleasure Beach buyers get innovative

13 September 2010

13 September 2010 | Angeline Albert

The procurement team at Blackpool Pleasure Beach has been helping sales staff boost company profits.

Katie Wilson, head of group purchasing, worked with three suppliers to devise a 15-minute up-selling training programme for customer-facing staff in retail outlets at the Pleasure Beach. Among the successes was an 18 per cent increase in the number of Britvic drinks sold at the attraction. Wilson, who joined the company in December 2007, said: “Our business is incredibly diverse. We get involved in sales and marketing campaigns too.”

The buying team also managed to beat its savings target by adopting innovations. Wilson’s team also made savings by improving the amusement park’s visitor wristbands. The quality of bands were not bearing up to the rigours of wet fairground rides, so the team tendered and organised trials using products from different suppliers.  The decision was made to switch from two vendors to one and more than half the cost of wristbands (53 per cent) was saved.

The four-strong purchasing team has an annual spend of £4 million and beat its two-year savings target of £290,000 by delivering £324,000.

Wilson told SM: “Compared to big businesses the savings may appear modest, but the percentage savings often exceed those of larger organisations and the variety of projects means the daily challenges are tremendous."

Following success with catering and engineering, the department’s role has grown to include the Pleasure Beach’s Big Blue Hotel, retail, sales and operations departments and the entertainment division, Stageworks Worldwide Productions.”

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