Dan Murphy’s mastermind Tony Leon buys half of Steve’s Liquor

 In Australia, Coles, NewZealand
Tony Leon the former boss of Coles’ Liquor division and the mastermind behind Woolworths’ Dan Murphy’s superstores, has aggressive expansion plans after buying a 50 per cent stake in retail chain Steve’s Liquor.

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Steve’s Liquor runs five stores in Victoria and Tasmania and a liquor wholesaling business and is planning to use that as a springboard to triple in size within three to five years.

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Mr Leon said on Thursday there were plans in place for strong organic growth, but also the potential for further acquisitions.

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“I’d like to double or triple the business in the next three to five years, and that’s without acquisitions,’’ he said.

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But there were numerous acquisition opportunities also on the cards as smaller players looked to exit the industry.

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He wouldn’t comment on the persistent speculation that he may have been part of a consortium that made an offer a couple of months ago to buy the 77-store Vintage Cellars chain from the Wesfarmers-owned Coles liquor business.

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The other half of Steve’s Liquor is owned by Steve and Glen Skelton, with Shane Vella a minority partner.

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Steve Skelton said the business was established 10 years ago, and had brought in Mr Leon to help it expand to the next phase. Sydney Morning Herald – Read more…

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