The incredible story behind ‘the best convenience store in Sydney’ as the owner takes a very bold move that customers rave about
Most convenience store employees could be mistaken for being too busy to serve customers or even hostile, but that’s not the case for the owner of ‘the best convenience store’ in the Sydney suburb of Redfern.
And now the shop, which sells rare and limited edition chips, sodas, chocolate bars and PRIME energy drinks, has now been immortalized in a new issue.
Last Friday, owner Hazem Sedda announced that a 3:56 minute song titled “The Greatest Convenience Store on Earth” is now available on Spotify.
Mr. Sedda, who has become an Instagram sensation for his outgoing personality and boundless positivity, said the electronic pop bop was an instant success.
Hazem Sedda is the owner of ‘the largest convenience store in Sydney’
“Since we started playing the song last Friday, customers are coming in and using their phones to Shazam the song,” he said.
‘The smile and the reaction when people dance to it – that makes me so happy’.
Available to stream on Spotify, the lyrics pay homage to the store’s curated list of products, such as cult American candies, cereals, and nearly a dozen varieties of Cheetos.
After Mr. Sedda’s father Ali Ata, 60, immigrated to Sydney from Palestine, he opened the shop in 2001 to support his family. In the store’s 22-year legacy, it has never missed a day of business.
‘My father never imagined that the shop would become so famous, so he is very proud. He’s so happy,” he said.
“(When he opened the shop) he actually slept in the shop, and I slept in the storage room above the shop for almost two years after I got to Australia, just to save time and money on train tickets.”
Mr. Sedda was halfway through pilot training before quitting to run a full-time Redfern Convenience Store in 2006, allowing his father to retire.
“It was more fun being at the convenience store than flying a plane. Then I started making some changes,” he said.
The Redfern favorite is a fixture in his local community and he’s seen customers grow up, leave the area and come back to visit him and the store.
He’s even had customers celebrate their birthdays at the store.
Sedda attributes the success of his small business to developing strong relationships with customers, offering convenient hours, preserving the look of the store, and friendly customer service.
The store has also grown in popularity after 2GB presenter Ben Fordham encouraged him to start an Instagram page in 2015.
‘He [Fordham] encouraged me to start an Instagram for the store, he took my phone and downloaded it for me,” Sedda said.
Since then, the Redfern supermarket has amassed thousands of followers, including ABC star Annabelle Crabb, American singer Slayyyter and Australian DJ duo Peking Duk among its fans.
Redferm Convenience Store owner Hazem Sedda
After emigrating to Sydney from Palestine, Mr Sedda’s father Ali Ata (right), 60, opened the shop in 2001
It has also become a destination for international travelers.
‘I’m really proud of what I’ve achieved. I’ve turned something from a corner shop into a destination for people traveling to Australia, not just the local Redfern people,” he said.
“It has become an icon of Redfern and it makes me very happy to come up with creative ideas to keep people happy.”