Majestic, the UK’s largest specialist wine retailer, are celebrating tonight – after they claimed both Retail Buying Team of the Year and Man of the Year, for Chief Commercial Officer Robert Cooke, at the 2020 Drinks Business Awards.
The recognition comes after a pivotal year for the retailer, which has seen a change in strategy towards product buying and a revamp of the entire range. This has seen over 325 new wines listed since the start of the year, amidst positive critical and customer reception, plus some key sales increases.
The aim has been to get back to Majestic’s roots, something which Cooke has been particularly vocal about, with the focus on stocking ‘a truly specialist range, with interesting wines sold by real experts across a nationwide store network. A combination you cannot get anywhere else on the high street’.
Speaking following the announcement of the results, the Drinks Business Man of the Year, Rob Cooke, said
“I was delighted to hear the news about our double win. Of course, it’s great to be recognised as an individual – but really this has been 100 percent a team effort. So to claim Buying Team of the year means the world to me. I know how hard the team has worked to get us back to where we need to be as the UK’s number one specialist. There’s been a lot of late nights, a lot of tasting and a lot of rebuilding of relationships – in a very difficult environment. But it’s all been worth it.
For me, one of the key points the judges alluded to was bringing our suppliers with us on that journey. Majestic is a business built on great relationships, whether between staff and customers, or buyers and producers. We’d lost sight of that – and I was determined to bring it back. It’s great to receive that recognition and I hope I’ll be able to celebrate with them soon too.”
The Drinks Business Awards were conceived 17 years ago to celebrate outstanding achievements in drinks in an array of categories, from retail buying, marketing and drinks design to social media. This is the second time in three years the Majestic Buying Team have claimed the award.
Majestic CEO, John Colley, added:
“We’re incredibly lucky as a business to have Rob in charge of our range. He lives and breathes wine, it’s not just a job for him – it’s a passion. I’m just delighted that we’ve been able to channel that passion into such a positive result for the whole company.
Our Buying Team, I feel, now really represent the perfect mix of experience and youth. Lots of them started their wine careers on Majestic shopfloors, including our superstar Beth Pearce MW. They absolutely deserve this recognition, and I can’t wait to see where they take our constantly evolving, specialist range next”