High Street

Majestic Wine records loss as focus switches to online

Wine retailer Majestic Wine, has recorded an £8.5m loss for the financial year up 2 April, in spite of a 6.3% increase in reported revenue to £506.1m.

Alongside the stores impairment charge, the retailer also invested extra funds into its online company Naked Wines.

The extra investment saw, revenue at Naked rise 14.5%, with customer investment rising by £5m to £19.1m.

The report comes at “a pivotal period” for the company, as it is actively looking for a buyer for the 200 Majestic Wine stores, marked by the switch in focus to its online retailer.

Financial advisors Rothschild will oversee the auction, with Sky News reporting Waterstones owner Elliott Advisors has registered its interest for the store network valued at £100m.

Rowan Gormley, group chief executive, said: “We are at a crossroads in the company’s history. As laid out in March, we have taken the difficult but important decision to focus on Naked and exit from Majestic. As at the date of this announcement, our intention is to sell the business and we are at an advanced stage with multiple bidders.

“A further update will be provided if and when negotiations conclude at which point we will seek shareholder approval to move ahead. If we are unable to complete the process over the summer, in time for the important Christmas and new year season, we will continue to run the two businesses independently of each other and look to restart the process in 2020.”

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