Majestic, the UK’s largest wine specialist wine retailer, has announced that it will be reopening the majority of its 200 store estate this weekend, following a series of successful trials.
The business took the decision to close all its stores two days before lockdown, instead operating a nationwide home delivery service through a fleet of over 200 Majestic vans. However, customers will now be allowed back into all but a handful of branches for the first time since the 21st March, albeit in limited numbers at a time and with extra hygiene and distancing measures in place.
Whilst under lockdown, the business has introduced a number of key changes – including refreshing wine ranges such as Spain, Burgundy and Rosé, and introducing over 250 new lines to the shelves.Majestic also revealed a spike in demand for English Wine throughout lockdown, with sales over double the previous April and May.
There has also been a series of changes to personnel, including at board and buyer level, all with the aim of ‘preparing the business for its next chapter’ following the acquisition of Majestic by Fortress Investment Group in December.
“Despite receiving ‘essential’ status in March, we have kept our branches closed throughout the coronavirus outbreak and put the safety of everyone connected with this fantastic business first and foremost. Everyone has been working flat out to not only continue to trade but to improve and grow the business. We can’t wait to welcome our customers back in store so they can get reacquainted with the Majestic they know and love” explains CEO, John Colley.
With bars and restaurants now also set to reopen, Majestic revealed that colleagues from their business to business arm, Majestic Commercial, would now be returning to their field based roles – having spent much of lockdown supporting the retail division and stores.
“I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to every single member of the Majestic team for their incredible efforts during an incredibly challenging few months. The way they have adapted, the work they have put in and commitment to the company and our customers has been outstanding.” Added Colley.
“Over a year ago Majestic stores were being threatened with wholesale closure. Our future has since been secured, and the role those stores have played across the entire UK in the face of a pandemic has been outstanding.”