Bargain Booze Sets Sites On Regional And Demographic Expansion

Last month Bargain Booze acquired Wine Rack, the string of London off licences. The acquisition is designed to help the firm’s expansion plans both geographically and demographically, opening up a series of new territories in the South of England while providing a new brand that appeals to additional demographics.

We caught up with Keith Webb, Franchise Director for Bargain Booze, to find out a little bit more about the UK’s premier stand-alone off licence.

We asked Keith to tell us about the evolution of Bargain Booze as a business and the thinking behind the Wine Rack acquisition: “Initially Bargain Booze started off as a company owned store estate, but very quickly the owners decided to move into Franchising because it was proving to be so successful as a proposition,” he said.

“We purchased Wine Rack at the end of August of this year. For us it was a strategic purchase because the two headline brands we currently have, which is Bargain Booze and Selective Convenience, cover off licence and convenience store but they’re really aimed at the value end of the market. So they aim at a demographic of a certain nature and it services that particular customer very well.”

“Wine Rack is a much more premium proposition in terms of its range, its pricing, and also the quality of its staff, so consequently we believe that the Wine Rack proposition will give us access to that Bargain Booze and Bargain Booze Select Convenience doesn’t access, so for us we believe it can move us into all the areas of the country and the big cities that we’re currently not in.”

In addition to the company’s expansion plans, Bargain Booze has itself recently undertaken a rebranding exercise, to appeal to a wider range of customers. We asked how this had been implemented to assist in future marketing:

“We believe it’s very important to keep on reinventing the brand really,” said Keith.

“We’ve just completed earlier on this year a huge customer research piece of work which has resulted in some very significant changes to the brand going forward, and we announced last week the new branding for the business which is behind me [in video]. It’s a much less aggressive logo than before, and it was really driven by an observation from the customer research that we weren’t that attractive to women! So consequently we’ve made it much more female friendly, much softer, and that will be reflected inside the stores as well. We think it will be great.”

Bargain Booze first launched as a Franchise in 1988, and last year boasted an annual turnover of £505m+. For more information on Bargain Booze click here.