Bright ideas to tackle credit crunch

25 July, 2008

Wine Cellar may be turning the economic downturn to its advantage with the launch of cheque-cashing facilities in its branches.

Its Booze Buster store in Runcorn, Cheshire, is the first to be equipped with a dedicated counter purely for customers wanting instant access to cash.

The trial comes at a time when multiple specialists are struggling for profitability and diversifying their offering .

Wine Cellar, which also owns the Simply Drinks estate, has made a series of head office appointments following the arrival of new managing director Steve Mahon earlier this year.

Ian McConville, a former Netto buyer who more recently had a senior role in Sainsbury's convenience division, is Wine Cellar's new operations director, OLN understands. Annette Whitehead is the new finance director and Gary Pemberton has assumed a senior buying role.

Steve Parker, formerly Wine Cellar's trading director, is now working on a temporary contract at Iceland, heading up the BWS buying.

Wine Cellar has also relaunched its website, removing the graphics and imagery - which date back to the days when it was owned by Nader Haghighi's Parisa and was the first transactional site to be launched by a multiple specialist.

The site offers free delivery on orders over £60.




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Richard Hemming MW: beware inverse snobbery

Few things can bring communal pleasure so intimately as wine. Apart from a hot tub, perhaps. Sport can trigger mass jubilation, film gives us shared empathy, but wine has a nigh-unique ability to bestow conviviality among us through a shared bottle – which makes it especially galling that we spend so much time divided over it.

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