In the June issue of National Liquor News, Vaughan Peters, National Trade & Marketing Manager for Liquor Legends, explained how the group has maintained its momentum from 2022, and benefited from e-commerce.

“We had another incredible year overall for 2022 and [are] obviously conscious of the significant external factors impacting our business. Thankfully we are off to a great start – in 2023 Liquor Legends continues to perform ahead of the total market in all categories,” Peters said.

“Sales recorded +11 per cent versus LY, driven by strong performance in all categories – beer (+6 per cent), RTD (+17 per cent), spirits (+9 per cent) and wine (+7 per cent). Wholesale performance is also in good growth, up by +10 per cent versus Q3 LY.”

Nevertheless, Peters highlighted the need to remain vigilant and responsive during periods of economic upheaval.

“Absolutely every business has varying pressures to deal with and we don’t get too ahead of ourselves looking into a crystal ball. What’s important is what we know and see and the ability to be nimble enough to react or adjust,” he said.

“Constant review of our program, member support and staying focused on our strategic objectives that encompasses areas like gross profit, category management, systems and development, communication and winning in retail standards aim to contribute positively.”

In the short term, Peters laid out the group’s immediate priorities, noting: “Outlet retention and recruitment remains the focus within our team as there is plenty of shifting sands at the moment within acquisitions and ownerships.

“It’s important that we continue to provide the service levels to current members whilst also offering solutions to retailers looking to improve their own business.”

One area of the business that is seeing significant success is e-commerce, delivering great results for Liquor Legends members.

“E-commerce has been the shiny new toy over the last couple of years and continues to surprise us with evidential insights. We are in a strong position with this platform and it really now has become a complement to the bricks and mortar business,” said Peters.

“We’ve seen a recent online activation bring over 14,000 new users to the website, over 3,500 thousand transactions, with an average basket size of $253.”

The growth in the online business has also been supported by increased shopper loyalty at Liquor Legends stores.

“We have seen the loyalty of our shoppers continuing to grow, not just within the rewards program recruitment but the confidence in shopper frequency due to range, pricing and service has been evident with off promotion sales dominating total share of sales, which ultimately means more profitability,” Peters added.

Looking forward, Liquor Legends has two significant projects that Peters believes will “groundbreaking” for the group’s membership.

“We will introduce LARA, (Legendary Auto Replenishment App) to deliver greater business efficiency on stock holdings, stock turn, forecasting and budgeting from a business support level,” he said.

The second focal point, named ‘Project Swordfish’, will aim to “nurture and grow” the group’s 760,000 rewards members by allowing for improved customer journey experiences.

“The benefit to existing and potential members is truly invaluable, not only with these two projects but complementing a full suite of support to drive their business forward,” Peters concluded.

Find our full interview with Peters and other leaders from Australia’s top independent banner groups in the June issue of National Liquor News.

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