Victoria Wine, the national off-licence chain thought to have been put up for sale by owners Allied Domecq, is testing its first home shopping service for wine.
Victoria Wine Cellars Direct is being tested in the West Midlands, with plans for a national roll-out next year.
The company has bought a database containing the names of several thousand wine drinkers, who will receive leaflets advertising the service, while a regional press campaign is running in four local newspapers to further promote the initiative.
Morwenna Angove, marketing controller at Victoria Wine, says there is an opportunity for major drinks retailers in the fragmented wine home shopping market.
“Current offers are both limited and highly specialised, appealing to a market which already has ex-tensive knowledge of wine,” she adds.
Consumers can choose from four mixed cases of wine: Cellars Select, the Summer Selection, Grape Variety, and Classic Case. They range in price from 39.95 to 75, and orders can be placed by telephone, fax or post.
Victoria Wine is in talks with petrol retailers about opening new drinks sections on forecourts, but a Victoria Wine spokeswoman refuses to comment.