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Oddbins opens first standalone beer shop

Published:  09 March, 2015

High street wine retailer Oddbins has opened its first standalone beer shop in Blackheath.

The Oddbins Beer Shop will stock around 300 beers, three quarters of which come from the UK, with the remainder from a number of countries around the world.

Oddbins MD Ayo Akintola told the trial store is part of an overall strategy to leverage the intellectual capital of the company, and boost Oddbins' ability to source interesting products, introduce consumers to unique and interesting products, and build on its track record of developing mutually beneficial relationships with small supplies and producers.

"We believe that by exploring this option we would be introducing a whole sway of consumers who wouldn't normally shop with us to the brand," he said.

Beers make up 8% of the retailers' total sales, with craft beers contributing around 60%. In the last twelve months, sales of locally produced craft beers in Oddbins' stores rose by 37%.

Oddbins Beer ShopOddbins Beer ShopOddbins' first standalone Beer Shop in Blackheath will stock around 300 beers

Oddbins md Ayo Akintola

The company said the UK was enjoying a "golden age in British brewing", which had been reinvigorated by a multitude of smaller craft ale producers. "We are committed to working with all our suppliers to support this grass-roots industry at a time when our customers are rapidly discovering the joys of tasty, locally made craft beers," a spokesman said.

However, she said there were no plans to roll out further beer-only shops at the moment, she added. "We're excited to see how the shop goes in Blackheath as well as the response it will receive from local customers. We think the shop will be sustainable and we will watch what happens before we decide on any future plans."

In May 2014, the retailer released its first own-label range of craft, partnering with the East London Brewery on its trial beer, Oddbins No 1, and Oxford's Compass Brewery on Oddbins No 2 Pale Ale.

The retailer currently operates around 54 stores but Akintola has plans to grow to around 100 company-owned stores and 200 franchises.

Oddbins was bought out of administration by Raj Chatha's European Food Brokers in 2011.