Majestic Wine closing in on £100m sale of store network

Majestic Wine sale
// Majestic Wine is closing in on a £100m sale of its entire UK retail network
// Private equity firm OpCapita, a US-based investor and another turnaround firm, are in the running
// Majestic Wine’s 200 stores are expected to be sold for £100m

Majestic Wine is reportedly close to confirming a £100 million sale of its entire UK store estate as the alcohol retailer pushes on with its transformation strategy.

According to Sky News, Majestic Wine received a number of offers for its bricks-and-mortar retail business, a month after it said it was looking to sell it off to focus on online retail and develop its Naked Wines arm.

Sky News said private equity firm OpCapita – the former owner of the Comet retail chain – and another turnaround specialist firm were the frontrunners among a group of investors looking to buy Majestic Wine’s network of 200 stores for £100 million.

Majestic Wine said that it was continuing to “to explore methods of releasing capital from its Majestic Retail and Commercial business to accelerate the growth of Naked Wines, with this release of capital to be explored through a range of potential options.”

It added: “Following recent press speculation, the group confirms that the sale of the Majestic branded retail business, including its related B2B operations… is one of the possible options being considered, and the group has received a number of expressions of interest.”

More details are expected to be revealed in due course, potentially before June 13 when Majestic Wine reveals its full-year results.

The wine specialist first said in March that it would sell some assets, close stores and review its dividend to focus on its growth engine Naked Wines, which it acquired in 2015 in a £70 million deal.

It added that it would try to ensure minimal job losses by transferring staff over to Naked Wines in the transformation scheme, which will also see the retail be renamed to Naked Wines plc.

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