John Heagney Consulting

John Heagney Consulting are delighted to have been again selected as the lead judging partner for the Independent Retailer of the Year. Every year we strive to develop, strengthen and refine the selection process for the Independent Retailer of the Year, providing a format with robust multi-stage assessment processes that ensures only the very best retailers are the winners.

We see the bar being raised higher and higher each year and this is testament to the strength, innovative quality and entrepreneurial individuality of the stores that are entered into the awards. There is no doubt that 2019 we will be assessing some truly outstanding stores.
The retail experts are led by John Heagney, an industry stalwart with extensive knowledge of the sector along with retail experts Jemima Bird, Guy Ousey and Mike Igoe. Each of these experts has a great depth of knowledge and passion for the sector and they all have real desire to see excellence in independent food retailing, all have exceptional industry track records and we are delighted to be working with each of them.

John travels the entire UK with members of the panel of industry experts making totally unannounced visits to the shortlisted stores where very detailed assessments that include extensive video and still photography of every store takes place. This methodology is industry-leading and will again categorically select the “very best of the best” retailers and stores in the UK.


Retail Experts

Mike Igoe 

Mike is a strong, cross functional retail and commercial director, with a proven track record in leading change,
innovation and profit growth within retail environments. He has a thorough understanding of the retail landscape, the appropriate distribution model and the importance of growing store networks.

His experience is primarily within the UK convenience industry working with leading retailers who have changed the landscape of grocery retailing in the last 25 years. Always results driven, he enjoys managing through people. Particular strengths are in business reengineering and strategic direction, team management, manufacturer engagement, contract negotiation and the ability to work with suppliers and manufacturers to drive the right outcome.


Jemima Bird 

 Jemima has run her own brand consultancy for the last five years, during which time she led the transformation of The Coop Food rebrand including an iconic tie up with the UK’s first product placement deal with ITV’s Coronation Street. As a “drop in” CMO Jemima is works with a number of start up and established brands and also has a small portfolio of investments in private companies ranging from a film distributor in Soho, a small chain of Caribbean-themed restaurants, a turnaround fund and the owner of the Wisden cricket brand.  Jemima achieved a distinction in her MBA from Warwick Business School, also winning the best dissertation prize. She is the Senior Non Executive Director of Revolution Bars Group Plc, Non Executive Director of Carpet Right Plc, a Trustee of the Football Foundation and was previously on the advisory boards of Skillsmart Retail and Change4Life.

Guy Ousey 

Guy leads IGD’s UK grocery retail research, focusing on the strategies being used to meet current and future shopper needs; responsible for delivering a mix of research outputs for IGD’s Retail Analysis service, building reports, delivering customised projects, briefings and events to help retailers and suppliers adapt and grow. 

Guy’s commercial experience is rooted in national account management and brand activation, prior to joining IGD, Guy led the retail delivery of the UK National Lottery in the convenience channel.




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