Oddbins could return to profit in 2010 after notching up its best sales figures for six years, MD Simon Baile has claimed.

The UK’s biggest independent off-licence has recorded double-digit retail sales growth, a 5% increase in footfall, an 8% rise in the average basket spend and a 38% rise in online sales in the 10 weeks to 28 March over the equivalent period last year.

The growth follows an overhaul of the entire wine range that has seen Oddbins move away from mainstream brands and increasingly source from independent suppliers.

Baile said the feel-good factor was returning to the off trade as the UK moves out of recession.

“Depressing images of an ailing Oddbins can be well and truly consigned to the spittoon,” said Baile. “We expect this upward trend to continue and to accelerate as more of our improved offering falls into place.”

He added: “We are increasingly excited about the opportunity that now exists in the UK independent trade and see Oddbins as the leading light of high street wine retail.”

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