Bestway close to snapping up Conviviality’s retail division; saving 2000 jobs

FRC KPMG Conviviality

Conviviality’s retail operation is reportedly on the verge of being sold to Bestway, which means the jobs of nearly 2000 workers could be saved.

According to reports in City AMThe Telegraph and Sky News, cash and carry wholesaler Bestway is expected to shortly announce the purchase of the Bargain Booze and Wine Rack fascias, as well as other Conviviality businesses Select Convenience and WS Retail.

The news comes a day after Conviviality formerly appointed administrators for its Conviviality Brands Ltd and Conviviality Plc divisions with immediate effect, and two days after it sold off its Matthew Clark and Bibendum alcohol wholesale division to the C&C Group, the parent company of Magners ciders.

When it announced the administration yesterday, Conviviality said it was still pursuing a sale of its off-licence and alcohol retail operations – which includes 716 shops and 370 franchisees.

Sky News predicted that Bestway could be paying £7.5 million for the acquisition.

If the sale to Bestway is confirmed, it could save around 2000 jobs. An addition 2000 were already saved after the Matthew Clark and Bibendum sale.

It would also be welcome news for the business, which has endured a spate of negative press coverage over several profit warnings, surprise tax bills, and the sudden departure of chief executive Diana Hunter.

Conviviality’s administrator, PwC, has not yet provided comment.

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