Accolade Wines: is the UK's largest wine supplier serious about retail move?
At first glance, the new store in the affluent Surrey town of Weybridge looks like any other local business, blending seamlessly into a high street frequented by multimillionaires, Chelsea footballers and other celebrities. But the once-derelict warehouse is actually the powerhouse behind the UK’s largest wine supplier, Accolade Wines, and the store in front is its first UK venture into bricks-and-mortar retailing.
In addition, the company has launched a direct-to-consumer website, www.1853wineclub.com, which distributes nationally, with no minimum order, free delivery for orders over £30, and 48-hour delivery in mainland UK. Orders are fulfilled direct from Accolade Park, the company’s vast warehouse and bottling plant in Bristol.
With Diageo and Fells already operating direct-to-consumer websites, albeit in a very low-key way, the 1853 Wine Club website model is not unique. However, teamed with a one-off bricks-and-mortar showroom, and the might of the Accolade Wines portfolio behind it, it’s one to watch.