Our capabilities

With 37 distribution centres across the country, making more than 200,000 tracked customer deliveries each week, it’s fair to say Smiths News understands its supply chain.

But it’s not just about getting newspapers and magazines out to retailers up and down the country. We are committed to customer care and providing value-added services to our customers that make it even easier to sell print media.

With our help, retailers can enhance the profitability of newspaper and magazine sales. We aim to ensure they receive what they want, when they want it. With one of the worlds largest SAP systems monitoring our entire network, we have the power to deliver on our promises. We help our retailers with merchandising and promotional solutions and we pride ourselves in having some of the industries most accurate and easy to work with financial systems.

It’s all part of our compelling proposition to publishers and retailers of every size, helping them drive sales and provide their customers with a wide range of newspapers and magazines, every single day of the year.


When it comes to moving newspapers and magazines around the country, Smiths News’ impressive reach and organisational structure constantly evolves to meet the changing market conditions.

Our network of distribution centres operates on a hub and spoke model. This allows us to process all major deliveries through our large regional centres, such as our purpose-built super-hub in Birmingham. These deliveries are then broken down and allocated to our network of local distribution centres, ensuring our coverage meets all requirements.

With a footprint that covers the majority of England and Wales, we deliver to some of the remotest corners of the country. As a result, we’re a trusted partner to publishers and retailers alike, who rely on us to distribute newspapers and magazines to consumers on time and cost-effectively, with a commitment to customer service. Our Sales-Based Replenishment (SBR) service takes this one stage further, and is available to retailers with electronic point of sale (EPoS) systems. SBR can ensure that retailers have just the right amount of stock on their shelves, without taking up valuable space in their stockroom.

The SBR programme works by analysing retailers' daily sales data via their EPoS system. Matching against the retailers' sales data our computer model allocates replenishment stock for delivery within 24hrs. As a result, retailers know they will receive the right stock at the right time– and we have done all the hard work for them.

Pick and pack

When newspapers and magazines are delivered to our distribution centres, our team immediately sets to work breaking down the delivery. The product is then loaded onto our dedicated TWI pack lines where the team then pick and pack each individual customer consignment, loading it into a secure tote/parcel for onward transit.

The delivery process is extremely time-sensitive, newspapers are delivered on to retailers within hours of arriving at our distribution centres, and within 24hrs for magazines. As a result, we place great emphasis on meeting our customer delivery targets, ensuring that consumers throughout the country are supplied with quality product in-full and on-time.

Returns processing

Our drivers collect unsold newspapers and magazines when they make deliveries, ensuring that retailers always have the most up-to-date product on their shelves. Returns are then scanned back into our distribution centres to ensure that we have accurate sale or return ledgers. Our financial processing systems then automatically processes the required credit notes. We have designed our systems so that they have the ability to link directly with a retailer’s own inventory management system, making it even easier for them to track their sales and stock.

We are proud to work with industry leading waste and recycling companies to maximise our recycling opportunities. We recycle 99 per cent of our newspapers and magazines for re-use as tomorrows newspapers.

Data management and invoicing

Providing retailers with a first-rate service is about more than simply delivering newspapers and magazines on time. We also use a world-class information platform to support our business activities. This helps us drive value for publishers and retailers, as well as enhancing service levels and increasing the efficiency of our supply chain.

We lead the industry in areas such as KPI reporting and EPoS data management. That means we can create tailored solutions for publishers and retailers, helping them to maximise sales and analyse market trends. What's more, because of our unique position in the supply chain, the data we record and disseminate provides a bird’s-eye view of the market, which is updated on a daily basis.

Another area which benefits from the richness of our data is the financial management of our supply chain. Our invoices are accurate, and can be issued either electronically or in hard copy. In addition, our systems easily integrate with the back office of other organisations – so whether you owe us money, or we owe it to you, you can be assured that Smiths News’s financial management is efficient, cost-effective and precise.

In addition we operate invoicing on behalf of third parties, enabling them to make use of our existing payments infrastructure, and reducing the demands on their own back office.

Copy management

Our copy management service helps publishers and retailers maximise sales, by putting the right publications in the right place, at the right time.

Our centralised team monitors daily sales data, and analyses seasonal trends. The team then updates our distrbution model to ensure the right product is distributed to each retailer. In addition, we provide promotional support to maximise sales including impact evaluation and increased circulation trending.

Thanks to the richness of our data, we are able to provide bespoke sales development support to our trading partners. This is enhanced by our SBR offer, which allocates copies for distribution on the basis of daily sales figures.

Customer service

Customer service is at the heart of all we do; our aim is for all our customers to experience an excellent standard of service every time they contact us. Our staff work hard to provide publishers and retailers with a friendly, professional and efficient service.

Developed in partnership with retailers to meet their needs, retailers can now manage their newspaper and magazine supplies via SNapp, our mobile app.  Free to download on iPhones and Android devices, SNapp allows retailers to; manage their deliveries, update orders, claim for missing titles or credit, view recall notes, scan barcodes, order extra and new titles.

SNapp also provides customers with instant updates and confirmation - making SNapp a vital tool for retailers whose time is precious, especially in the early hours of the morning.  To help retailers find their way around SNapp, Smiths News has created a Q & A section and five short tutorial videos on each key section in SNapp - simply click here to view.  A dedicated SNapp Support Team is also available to help customers with any SNapp queries. Simply call: 0345 124 0251 or email: snapp@smithsnews.co.uk

As well as providing a free app, We also operate an 0345 local call telephone number, which enables calls to be transferred across our network to specialist customer service operators promptly and accurately.

We operate three contact centres, handling over 24,000 calls a week.

Whatever the size of your business, and whatever the nature of your relationship with Smiths News, your dealings with us will always be marked by professionalism, courtesy and mutual respect.

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