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Majestic Wine focuses on growth

Majestic Wine focuses on growth

Majestic Wine reported growing sales and profits despite a challenging environment, and suggested future investment might be focused online and in the US as it looks to grow customer numbers.

The multichannel wine specialist, a Top100 retailer in IRUK Top500 research, reported revenue of £217.3m in the six months to October 2, 5.7% up on the same time last year, while pre-tax profits of £3m were up from a loss of £4.4m last time.

Chief executive Rowan Gormley said profits were now growing two years into its transformation plan and it was ready to accelerate growth. “We have the opportunities to invest in new customers and a team excited to focus on what they do best,” he said. “It’s time to put our foot on the gas.

“In this half, Naked Wines has demonstrated the quality of its model, people and management, by achieving profitability in all three geographical markets. It has become a disciplined business committed to continuous improvement.

“The focus on empowering our wonderful store teams in Majestic Retail has finally borne fruit, with improved staff engagement flowing through into improved customer engagement, which means improved loyalty and retention.

“The team have worked like demons and I am dead proud of every one of them.”

The transformation plan was put into place after Gormley joined the company as chief executive through Majestic Wine’s acquisition of online wine specialist Naked Wines, which he founded.

The retailer said its best growth opportunities appeared to through Naked Wines rather than Majestic Retail, digital rather than traditional channels and the US rather than the UK but that it would invest where it saw the best potential for returns.

Already this year, it said, it had launched a new website, completed most store refits and “dramatically” improved stock availability, while giving stores “the customer data tools they need to build customer engagement and retention.”

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