Subscriber login Close [x]
remember me
You are not logged in.

Conviviality offensive continues as sales rise across business units

Published:  07 November, 2017

Conviviality continues to demonstrate its buying and selling power via its half-year trading update, which shows positive growth in each of its three newly configured business units.

Conviviality has posted the first set of comparable revenues for its three business arms since a massive restructure of the company began last year.

The drinks giant has spent the past year consolidating its three-pronged approach for covering all the bases of the UK drinks supply chain, via Conviviality Direct, Conviviality Retail, Conviviality Trading.

In the first set of like for like results since the restructure - and since Bibendum PLB Group was acquired in May 2016 - sales in H1 2017 across the three business units were in growth.

In the 26 weeks to October 29, sales for the Conviviality Direct, the largest segment of the business which encompasses Matthew Clark and Bibendum, totalled £540m – a 6.9% rise compared to the same period last year.

Sales were similarly strong in the company’s off-trade (PLB/Walker & Woodhouse) and events arm, Conviviality Trading, where like for like sales rose by 9.6% to £93m.

Growth was strongest in the company’s retail arm however.

Conviviality Retail, which is comprised of Bargain Booze, Bargain Booze Select Convenience and Wine Rack, saw sales rise 10% over the corresponding prior period (£203m) thanks to the increase in the number of franchisees and also improvement in the “quality” of new stores, both in terms of location and proposition, according to the group.

Total sales were 9.2% ahead of the same period last year, worth £836m.

Convivality’s restructure came about last year following the acquisitions of Matthew Clark on October 7, 2015, Peppermint Bars (part of Convivality Trading) on December 31, 2015 and Bibendum PLB Group on May 20, 2016.

The business was then divided around three main components, covering on and off-trade supply, retail and events.

According to CEO Dianna Hunter, the period has been one of “significant change”.

Much of the past year has been focused on the integration of on-trade supplier Matthew Clark and Bibendum PLB Group, with the implementation of the company’s ERP system within Bibendum occurring during the period.

All business units will be operating on the same ERP platform by end of the current financial year, said the group, and will be rolled out on a sequential basis meaning that the associated cost savings will be “weighted more heavily” on H2 FY2018 than previously anticipated.

CEO Dianna Hunter said the period’s strong performance is a result of the support and engagement of customers and franchisees, while the group’s major re-structures have been focused on longevity.

“During this period the company has undergone significant change as we continue to implement systems that will ultimately serve to future proof our business and enable us to continue to deliver the outstanding service that our customers and Franchisees expect from us,” she said.