Oddbins enters administration

4th February 2019

Oddbins enters administration

Last week we reported Oddbins was on the brink, now it has gone.

The owners of UK wine chain Oddbins have called in administrators to handle the firm’s retail operation until a buyer is found, citing a challenging retail climate for the decision. Parent company European Food Brokers (EFB), which owns drinks distribution brands including Oddbins and Wine Cellars, announced the news this month after buying Oddbins in 2011 when the company last fell into administration.

Duff & Phelps has been appointed to run the business until a buyer is found. A spokesperson for the administrators however clarified that EFB itself and its drinks distribution business “continues to trade and is not an entity that has entered into administration”.

Physical retail continues to struggle

Challenges to the High Street from cost pressures and online commerce have been cited for the decision, alongside the effects of economic uncertainty stemming from Brexit. In a statement,  EFB noted: “The deterioration of the High Street, combined with the continuing economic uncertainty surrounding the withdrawal of the UK from the EU, has resulted in an unsustainable, tough physical retail market.”

Many retailers have been affected by a slowdown in High Street footfall as more consumers shop online, with inflation, political uncertainty and rising wage costs all combining to squeeze retailers’ margins. Most recently, Patisserie Valerie and high street music chain HMV have joined the string of retailers to go insolvent, with the latter entering administration for a second time last December.

Wine chain says high rent and poor trade strained cash flow

In addition, personal insolvency rates have also been rising — leading to a further drop in consumer confidence. Administrators for Oddbins observe that “the continued decline in consumer spending, point[s] to a squeeze on household finances, [which] combined with rising living and national wages have put increased pressure on retailers’ bottom lines.”


The brand itself has also struggled to keep pace with supermarket drinks distributors and online suppliers. Several of the company’s competitors now trade exclusively online and others are diverting more and more investment into IT and home delivery technology, as dramatically lowered in-store footfall leaves retail staff wages and expensive commercial leases increasingly difficult to justify. In an email to staff, Oddbins blamed an average 17.8% increase in rents at its sites for placing “a significant strain on the cash flow of the business.”


Businesses are advised to shore up credit management systems as difficult trading conditions continue to affect cash flow for retailers and a growing number of customers are expected to be unable to fulfil their financial commitments.

How can CPA help?

Are you a supplier of oddbins?

Just because you have been dealing with a customer for many years without any issues, it doesn’t mean you are trading risk free.

Healthy companies can see their fortunes change , leaving suppliers who have extended credit caught out.

Just look at how many big retailers have disappeared  already in recent years.

At the Credit Protection Association, we provide first class credit information that can help you avoid being over extended to customers who are at risk. Our monitoring service can flag up warning signs long before the end, giving you the chance to adjust and reduce your exposure. We provide recommended credit limits and credit scores on a traffic light system and can help you set appropriate credit policies for your customers.

We regularly publish lists of the latest insolvencies but by then it is too late. Our credit reports predict approximately 96% of company insolvencies long before they arrive.

Companies in trouble usually have very bad bad cash flow and they try to deal with it by delaying payment to their suppliers, increasing your exposure to them.

It maybe too late for suppliers of oddbins but we might be able to help you avoid the next one.

As a third party collector, we can also get your payments prioritised over those who are not as hot on collections. When you customer receives a letter from the Credit Protection Association regarding their outstanding account, they are going to want to get that resolved as a priority. Our overdue account recovery service can get your unpaid invoices to the top of their “to do” list and get your invoice paid.

Our debt recovery and credit management services give our members the financial freedom needed to grow and prosper, while our new Late Payment Compensation department could unlock hidden potential and offer the compensation needed to springboard your business to success.

Ready to speak to an advisor?

For help or advice on credit management, entirely without obligation.

Call us today

0330 053 9263

The Credit Protection Association is a credit management company established in 1914. If you supply goods or services on credit then we can help you!

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