Countdown has last night recognised and celebrated its outstanding team members at the company’s annual Trade Show.

At a special awards dinner held in Rotorua, each of the winners were congratulated for their passion and dedication to both their team and customers.

Brett Ashley, Countdown’s General Manager Operations, said the awards are a fantastic opportunity to celebrate excellence within the Countdown team.

“Our stores and team are part of 180 communities around New Zealand, and it’s great to be able to take a moment from our busy schedules to recognise and reward excellence within our business," said Ashley.

“Each of our winners has demonstrated a number of attributes that are so important to retailing including leadership, caring for our team, and engaging and supporting our customers across the country whether that’s behind the scenes in our online business, buying team and distribution centres, or in our stores.  We congratulate all our winners and thank them for a great year."

For the first time, Countdown has taken its annual Trade Show to Rotorua to get together with store and support teams, as well as suppliers.

“We’ve really enjoyed spending time with our suppliers and team and trying some of the new products about to hit our shelves.  We’ve got some exciting plans in place for the coming months and it’s a good time before the busy Christmas season to talk about how we can work even closer together to bring even more value to our customers."

The 2019 Countdown team winners are:

Store Manager of the Year

Tom Jones-Griffiths - Countdown Newmarket

Checkout Operator of the Year

Keegan Taylor - Countdown Nawton

Countdown Category Manager of the Year

Sam Heveldt - General Merchandise

Online Personal Shopper of the Year

Ashleigh Young - Countdown Rangitikei St

Online Driver of the Year

James O’Connell - Countdown Palmerston North

Forklift Driver of the Year

Rithya Tith - Auckland National Distribution Centre

Truck Driver of the Year

Craig Cowper - Mainfreight Ltd

Photo caption:

Back row: Natalie Davies, Woolworths New Zealand Managing Director, Ella Reardon from Countdown Nelson runner-up, Keegan Taylor from Countdown Nawton, winner of the Checkout Operator of the Year, and Gina King from Countdown Karori, runner-up.

Front row: Brett Ashley, General Manager Operations and Scott Davidson, General Manager Merchandise holding the winning checkout operator of the year trophy; the golden cash register