Blog: Chris MercerOddbins' plight bad news for wine in the UK

Chris Mercer | 4 March 2011

We've added some meat to the metaphorical bones of our Oddbins coverage today, with what we consider to be solid sources saying that the retailer is facing possible administration.  

The gist of it is that Oddbins is running out of cash, owes suppliers money and is locked in a potentially-costly court battle with its previous owner, Castel Freres. The outcome of the court battle, in particular, could be key to the retailer's future, as we understand it.

Of course, we're not at the endgame just yet and Oddbins' management has maintained that several options are open to it, including, again as we understand it, restructuring and outside investment.

The retailer's plight, however, is another sad chapter for the UK's independent wine trade. Three quarters of wine is sold by the country's big four supermarkets.

Added to that, huge increases in duty tax on wine, rent rises and a tough economy have played havoc with wine sales over the last couple of years. The forecast for the sector is not much better.

Yet, Oddbins claims to have the highest average spend on wine - around GBP8 per bottle - among the UK's major wine retailers. The UK-wide average spend per bottle is around GBP4.50.

The industry is forever talking about wanting consumers to "trade up". In that context, Oddbins' struggle is a bitter blow.


BLOG

When life gives you lemons, make soap

Bacardi's 42 Below vodka brand has found a novel way to use the lemons left over from cocktail-making: Turn them into liquid soap....

BLOG

Small measures required as Philadelphia soda tax adds up

Philadelphia’s soda tax came into force on Sunday, and is reportedly causing a stir in the city's check-out aisles....

BLOG

Accolade Wines and a giant of the tennis world

Earlier this month, I was most-kindly invited by Accolade Wines to visit the Royal Albert Hall in London. The reason? They wanted to see a tennis great in action, and then give them a guided tour thro...

BLOG

Situation Vacant - Must love whisk(e)y

Do you like whisk(e)y? And, I mean, really like whisk(e)y? Are you at a loose end in the first half of 2017? If so, then I've found just the job for you....

just-drinks homepage



Forgot your password?