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Press Release

McColl’s Pivots During Crisis to Serve Vulnerable Customers with Oracle

Oracle Retail Consulting Partners with Leading Retailer

REDWOOD SHORES, Calif. and London, UK—September 17, 2020

McColl’s is one of the UK’s leading neighbourhood retailers serving the convenience and newsagent sectors with 1,400 stores. For communities, the scale and accessibility of McColl’s became a lifeline during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Supporting our community is at the heart of our business,” said Karen Bird, Colleague and Operations Director at McColl’s. “Never has this passion been tested more than during the current health crisis. With Oracle, we were able to pivot quickly to support new programs and protect our most vulnerable customers.”

In June, the UK Government introduced a free school meal voucher scheme that enabled eligible parents and caregivers to receive a weekly eGift card that could be redeemed in a handful of specified grocery retailers. For many vulnerable children, free school meals are vital to their health and wellbeing. The trick for retailers was to be able to effectively accept these vouchers. Thankfully, McColl’s was able to rise to the challenge using Oracle Retail Xstore Point-of-Service (POS).

In just 11 days, Oracle Retail Consulting (ORC) enabled McColl’s to accept these eGift cards in all of their stores to become one of only ten UK retailers to offer this service. The caregiver would receive an eGift card on their mobile phone. In the store, a QR barcode was scanned and validated at the POS and the balance of the eGift card was updated for future shopping. McColl’s has helped its customers redeem more than 30,000 eGift cards since the scheme began.

McColl’s at the same time was also able to react at great speed in order to help those most vulnerable and those isolating during the initial health crisis and this new services continues today. McColl’s introduced Delivery Partner Shopping, most recently through Deliveroo. The customer orders from Deliveroo and McColl’s fulfilled the order from the closest store. A simple, yet vital, adjustment to the POS made it possible for McColl’s to reconcile the stock and financial position in the store for each delivery.

“Working closely and quickly with McColl’s, our consulting team was able to help them rise to the challenge when the community needed them most,” said James Kelly, Regional Director, Oracle Retail. “Leveraging community knowledge and with the support of Oracle Retail, the chain had the agility to navigate new demands and uncharted waters to take care of their customers when they needed them most.”

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About Oracle Retail

Oracle is the modern platform for retail. Oracle provides retailers with a complete, open, and integrated platform for best-of-breed business applications, cloud services, and hardware that are engineered to work together. Leading fashion, grocery, and specialty retailers use Oracle solutions to accelerate from best practice to next practice, drive operational agility, and refine the customer experience. For more information, visit our website,

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