Bargain Booze owner toasts to better than expected hike in profit
Conviviality Retail, the company behind the off-licence chain Bargain Booze, saw pre-tax profits rise by 4.4 per cent last year after broadening its range of wines and ales to woo more affluent shoppers.
The Aim-listed group, which suspended trading last week after confirming it is in takeover talks with wholesaler Matthew Clark, reported profits of £9.7m for the year to 26 April compared with £9.3m last year.
Revenue increased 2.4 per cent to £364.1m, although sales at sites open more than a year rose 1.7 per cent.
“We have continued to deliver against our objectives set out at flotation in July 2013 and are pleased to report profits slightly ahead of expectations, during a year where we have delivered significant change across our business,” chief executive Diana Hunter said.
The north west-based chain, which operates under a total six brands including Thorougoods and Wine Rack, worked with 70 new suppliers and added 280 new products to its range last year, including premium bottled ales and flavoured spirits in a bid to broaden its appeal.
Wine sales increased by 10 per cent year-on-year while its participation in the wine sector rose by seven per cent.
Conviviality has also expanded its presence both in its north west heartland as well as the south east of England after acquiring 26 Rhythm and Booze stores last year and 37 sites owned by GT News in February.
It is now in talks to buy Matthew Clarke, which is owned by Punch and supplies drinks to over 20,000 pubs and off-licenses in the UK.