Independent wine shops have seen their combined turnover go up by 7% over the past year, according to an exclusive survey by The Wine Merchant.
Total sales in the sector now stand at £483.2 million, up from £421 million in last year’s survey.
The average takings per shop, excluding VAT, have risen even more sharply. The figure is up from £617,537 to £681,997, an increase of just over 10%. The survey shows that an average of 70% of turnover comes from shop sales, with a further 22% contributed by wholesale activities and 5% from web orders.
Independents are also far more bullish than they were a year ago. Forty-two per cent say they are “very optimistic” about a sales increase this year, compared to 25% in 2013. The number claiming to be “fairly optimistic” is unchanged at 50%.
The proportion of retailers who feel they are likely to open additional branches in the coming year fell slightly, from 12% to 11%.
More than 120 retailers completed this year’s survey, the biggest study thought to exist in the independent sector.