European Food Brokers is to conduct a review of its fascias following its acquisition of 109 stores from Wine Cellar.

Chief executive Raj Chatha said he had yet to decide on a plan for the new stores and would concentrate on maximising sales for the key festive trading period before carrying out a review in January.

The number of fascias operated by the company increased from three to six when it bought the stores belonging to Wine Cellar, which fell into administration in October.

EFB added the Booze Busters, Simply Drinks and Simply Food & Drinks names to a portfolio that already included the Shop2Go, Drink2Go and Whittalls Wines brands.

"There will be a review starting in January," Chatha told The Grocer. "There is no intention to shut any of the stores. The only thing that may change will be the fascias."

Since buying the Wine Cellar stores he had been pre-occupied with buying northwest on-trade delivered wholesaler John Stephenson & Sons and an unsuccessful bid to buy 200 Threshers, Wine Rack and The Local stores from the administrators of First Quench Retailing.

Chatha said the Wine Cellar stores he recently bought were "starting to turn the corner" and insisted convenience-led off licences could still compete with supermarkets.

"There will be an investment programme, we will modernise them and open more," he added.

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