Encouraging annual sales at Bestway despite continued tobacco declines

Bestway Wholesale, the UK’s biggest privately-owned wholesaler, and which acquired the assets of Conviviality last week, has reported a 2% decrease in sales to £2.13bn for the year ended 30 June 2017.

The company said the decrease in revenue was ‘in line with the performance of the broader wholesale sector’ due to tobacco sales being under continued downward pressure.

The wholesaler reported its pre-tax profit rose from £19.7m in 2016 to £42.7m during the year after it made an “exceptional profit” on the disposal of investment properties.

The company said: “This was an encouraging performance aided by margins increasing to historic levels and increase loyalty from customers following our decisions to invest in margin in 2016.”

Bestway said sales through its symbol group best-one increased by 19.7% excluding tobacco and 12.9% overall during the 12-month period.

Retailers benefitted from rebates in excess of £1m via the My Rewards scheme, the wholesaler added.

Bestway Wholesale’s online business now has 62,000 registered users, compared to 37,000 a year earlier. Weekly sales grew 12.0% with total app and website sales averaging £26m a month. The mobile app now accounts for nearly 25% of all online transactions, compared to 15% in the prior year, the company added.

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