The takeover of drinks wholesaler Matthew Clark by Conviviality Retail, the UK’s largest franchised off-licence and convenience chain, will signal greater range, price and delivery times for retailers, the company has said.
Conviviality Retail, which operates under six fascias including Wine Rack, Bargain Booze, Bargain Booze Select Convenience and Thorougood, finalised the £200m buyout of the UK-wide beer, wine and spirits distributor last week. In the process, the company dropped the word “Retail’ from its name and will operate under the name Conviviality Plc.
The sale means Conviviality, which has 624 stores nationwide, will become the UK’s biggest specialist drinks wholesaler allowing it to supply an unrestricted selection of products and therefore an increased range.
The acquisition could also mean lower prices for retailers combined with an increased distribution capacity, with retailers now being supplied from 16 operating warehouses through a fleet of 260 delivery trucks. “A wide product range, containing many recently-launched products, coupled with next-day nationwide delivery is a key part of Conviviality Plc’s proposition,” said Tom Hufton of FTI Consulting.
Conviviality chief executive officer Diana Hunter said: “The combination of these two companies is a great strategic fit. Matthew Clark is a significant wholesaler in the drinks industry, larger than the next seven independent operators combined, and together with Conviviality this creates a unique business.”
Dilip Patel, of Bargain Booze in Potters Bar, said: “I’ve always benefited from being a Bargain Booze franchise with good advertising, marketing and retail support, but better delivery times would be a real benefit to me.
“At the moment, I order on Sunday for Tuesday delivery but it would be great to say to customers that their order would be there overnight. A larger range to choose from is also very attractive.”