Majestic Wine has revealed it is reviewing plans to expand its store footprint to 330 stores by 2021, as it reported a fall in profits.

Majestic Wine currently operates from 201 stores

The wine retailer, which currently operates from 210 stores, said it was “currently conducting a comprehensive revalidation of the locations and total footprint required to service our targeted segment of the UK wine market”.

Chief executive Steve Lewis told Retail Week: “The world has changed since [we announced our store expansion plans] three and half years ago, with the growth of online. [The review ] is just good housekeeping.”

Lewis added that the review would not impact its existing estate.

It comes as Majestic reported its market share edge up by 0.1% to 4.3% during the six months to September 29, despite fierce competition from the grocers and the rise of discounters Aldi and Lidl.

Lewis said that the retailer was able to fend off the competition by providing excellent customer service, launching a range of wines for £4.99 a bottle, offering customers a “compelling proposition” across its sparkling wines range and holding free tasting events.

“This gives us a compelling offer,” said Lewis.

Personalised marketing

Majestic said it was now sending customers more targeted and personalised email marketing campaigns, such as messages based on their past purchases.

In January, Majestic will launch a mobile app that will enable customers to view all their past purchases made in-store and online.

The average bottle of wine bought at Majestic increased by 31p to £8.02, with the average spend per transaction up £3 to £130. Sales of fine wine (with a price tag of £20 or above) soared by 22% to £9m.  

Majestic reported a 2.8% rise in group sales to £133.8m in the period, with like-for-likes also increasing by 2.8%.

Online sales increased 12.3% to £12.9m, now representing 10.8% of UK retail sales compared with 10.3% in 2013.

Group pre-tax profit fell by £1m to £8.5m while pre-tax profit at the Majestic Wine chain fell to £7.7m, down from £8.4m in 2013.

The retailer blamed this on investments in infrastructure, technology and consumer insights.

Majestic Wine sees sales rise but profits fall during first half