The Australian Liquor Stores Association (ALSA) Study Tour group has returned from its visit to London and Paris with a very positive outlook for the future of the retail trade. 

The tour was focused on examining in depth the dynamics of the retail liquor market in London and Paris, to see what learnings could be brought back to the local industry. 

The most compelling of these was that, in a far more consolidated market than Australia, the non supermarket based retailers have, by and large, done an excellent job of differentiating their retail offers. 

The ALSA group said that the success of retailers such as Majestic Wine in the UK demonstrated that with a clear understanding of the market, a strategic retail offer and a strong focus on staff, it was possible to operate successfully and grow market share in a marketplace where the major supermarket chains account for over eighty percent of the retail turnover.  

"The trip exceeded my expectations in terms of outcomes,” said ALSA president Giuseppe Minissale. "The collaboration between the retailers and the suppliers made for a very powerful group and we look forward to following through with some of the initiatives we talked about overseas."

Other consistent themes the group found were that as in Australia, ‘premiumisation’ is driving growth in each of the key categories and innovation and new product development was the key to engaging new and existing consumers.

However, they found that pack and container size differentiation was something the Australian market needed to look at more closely. 

The group, made up of some leading retailers and suppliers, also met in a workshop session environment regularly during the trip and was able to work on all the issues raised and observed collaboratively.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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