A business development manager for a chain of community convenience stores based in Houghton Regis has won a national award for his retailing ideas.
Armin Ahmetagic, of Houghton Trading, also manages the Nisa Local store in Neptune Square, Houghton Regis, and believes retailers should carry out full financial health checks in their businesses.
He scooped the Achievement Award, for people aged 21-36, at the Association of Convenience Store’s (ACS) 2013 awards at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry on Thursday (September 26). The aim of the award is to find a solution to boost convenience retailers’ profitability in the face of intense competition and technological change.
He has won a study tour to Zurich, Switzerland.
Mr Ahmetagic said: “I’m thrilled to have won this award. Having been in retail for 15 years there is no silver bullet to boost retailer’s profitability, but one of the key aspects is to have a regular full financial controls health check.”
Ahmetagic first started working at the Nisa Local Neptune Square store (part of the Houghton Trading group owned by local entrepreneur Kishor Patel) in 1998 on a part-time basis when he was studying for his A-levels.
Not wanting to get into debt, he chose not to go to university and instead saw the opportunity to further his career in retail by working full time in the store and gaining qualifications in retailing.As the business has grown, so has his career. He’s now not only the store manager at Neptune Square but he’s also the company’s business development manager.
This recognition comes as one of Kishor Patel’s other convenience stores – Nisa Local Toddington – scooped the highly commended accolade for community retailer of the year in the national Retail Industry Awards on September 24.