Bargain Booze has increased its number of convenience stores by 50% over the past year.

Ninety Bargain Booze Select Convenience and Thorougoods Select Convenience stores were now trading, compared with 60 last year, said joint MD Matthew Hughes. He added that the new Select Convenience stores had helped boost the number of stores operating under the five fascias run by Bargain Booze from 590 to 612 in the past year.

"There has been increased demand for stores that sell discount alcohol along with a convenience offer," said Hughes. "Alcohol will always be our point of difference but we are seeing that a good range of convenience can work alongside it.

"We are into the second year of our convenience programme and it is proving popular with our franchisees."

The demise of First Quench Retailing had also helped increase the number of Bargain Booze stores, with its franchisees buying 10 former FQR sites, and a further 10 in the pipeline, added Hughes. He said franchisees had been put off buying some FQR stores, however, because "silly premiums" meant they could not be run profitably.

"We have weathered the recession and most weeks retail sales are up 6% compared with the same period the previous year," said Hughes.

Bargain Booze's turnover in the year ending April 2009 was £356.7m, with profit before tax of £11.3m.