Majestic Wine (LON: WINE) has already flagged up its full year figures and much of its strategic review, but there could be more information when the annual results of the wine retailer are published on Thursday.

It is already clear that that the eponymous Majestic Wine business will not be part of the group for much longer. Management would like to sell the whole business but may have to put up with selling individual sites or groups of sites.

Management expects the costs of exiting the retail business will be covered by cash from asset disposals, although some sites may be closed rather than sold.

The commercial business and Lay and Wheeler are also up for sale.

Naked future

The company will concentrate on its Naked Wines branded online business. It may even rebrand some Majestic Wine sites as Naked.

The growth at Naked is international with North America a major focus. Annual marketing spending on Naked will be increased from £20m to £26m.


Full year pre-tax profit of £11m, down from £17.2m, is expected, but these historic results are not interesting in themselves. It expected that the Majestic Wine retail business has been weak.

Even the core Naked business is not expected to put in a particularly good performance because any growth will be offset by additional investment. Net debt could be as high as £20m.

The big uncertainty is by how much management will slash the dividend. The final could be cut from 5.2p a share to 2p a share.


It should be noted that activist investor Gatemore has taken a 3.79% stake in Majestic Wine.

Gatemore overhauled the board at parcel delivery group DX (LON: DX.) and has also been involved in TLA Worldwide (LON: TLA) selling off subsidiaries.

Just what Gatemore wants to happen at Majestic Wine is not clear. However, it may not agree with the current strategy.

There will certainly be plenty of announcements to absorb over the coming months. It is better to keep an eye on Majestic Wine at a comfortable distance rather than buy shares. There is so much uncertainty about what will happen to the group and just what its balance sheet is going to look like.