Naked Wines enjoys strong Christmas trading period

Naked Wines’ UK business enjoyed 12.2% year-on-year growth in the 10 weeks to December 31 as shoppers stocked up on cases ahead of Christmas.

Majestic Wine’s retail estate also grew, by a more modest 1.5%, while fine wine division Lay & Wheeler saw sales grow 5.3% and B2B sales were up 3.5%.

Meanwhile, Naked Wines saw sales rise 21% in the US and 14.8% in Australia, leaving the total group with overall sales growth of 6.3% over Christmas.

Chief executive Rowan Gormley said: “The team have worked really hard over the Christmas trading period and have delivered sales growth across all our business units.

“As we said in November [when it reported mixed H1 results] consumer behaviour is changing and we’re seeing a revolution in retail.

“We think there will be winners and losers, and we believe we have what it takes to be one of the winners. We are uniquely placed, with the people, data and skills in place to succeed despite the headwinds we are seeing.

“While trading has been challenging over the Christmas period, the trends we reported in November are the same, namely strong growth in our overseas markets and our digital propositions but headwinds for our UK retail stores.

“We look forward to setting out more of our future plans for the group, including the retail business with our full year results in June.”

The group noted that sales of rosé were up 21% at Naked Wines’ UK business in November and December. It said that consumers “snapped the pale hues of Provence and beyond with their Christmas dinner”.

Wines from eastern Europe, Greece and England proved popular, with the latter growing sales by 65%. A bigger focus on German and Austrian saw volumes double, while fortified wines were also selling well, along with Hungary, Bulgaria, Greece and Lebanon.

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