Coles has reported its FY23 financial results, with total sales revenue up 5.9 per cent to $40.5bn, with the liquor division reported a ‘flat’ year overall, with declines in the first half of the year offset by a return to growth in the second half.

Overall liquor sales revenue for the year was $3.6bn, down 0.1 per cent from the previous year, with sales declining in the first half by 2.4 per cent as the business cycled COVID-19 related on-premise closures and restrictions, before returning to growth of 2.7 per cent in the second half.

Coles said that its liquor sales performance was driven by Liquorland, which was helped by the completion of 215 Liquorland Black & White renewals as well as the opening of 35 new Liquor stores.  Ready-to-Drink was the group’s strongest category while growth in the exclusive liquor brand (ELB) portfolio continued, with sales revenue increasing by 8.5 per cent. This growth was helped with 259 new ELB products added to the portfolio.

Ecommerce remained strong for the group, increasing 22.6 per cent on the previous year to $203m, with growth driven by on-demand delivery which is now available in more than 660 stores, and the introduction of express delivery through DoorDash and UberEats.

Speaking about the overall performance, Coles Group CEO, Leah Weckert said: “Cost of living is the number one focus for our customers right now and we continue to invest in providing value through ‘Dropped & Locked’, everyday trusted pricing, weekly specials, Flybuys and our exclusive brand portfolio.

“These initiatives are resonating with customers and we remain well positioned to grow in the current environment as more customers choose to eat at home.

“During my first few months as CEO, we have made some important additions to the executive leadership team with Michael Courtney appointed as our new Coles Liquor Chief Executive, Amanda McVay as Chief Customer Officer and Anna Croft as Chief Commercial Officer.

“I’ve also spent time listening to our team members and customers on what’s important to them. Customers want consistent availability and quality, great value and innovative products that make healthy meals easier and more convenient. Our team is energised to drive improvements in our operating model and team member capability that will improve productivity and deliver a more consistent customer experience.

“In parallel, the Board and executive leadership team have been working on the evolution of our strategy. With the purpose of ‘helping Australians eat and live better every day’, our evolved strategy will focus on creating a destination for food and drinks, accelerating through digital and delivering consistently now and for the future. This will help us continue to keep pace with an ever-changing environment and evolving customer preferences.”

During the year, 236 store renewals were completed, 35 new stores were opened and 11 stores closed across the Liquorland, Vintage Cellars and First Choice banners. At the end of the period the portfolio comprised 957 stores.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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