The CEO of Conviviality, which has this year become one of the largest wine suppliers to restaurants and supermarkets in the UK, says the group is well equipped to cope in Brexit Britain.

A weak pound and warnings of significantly slower economic growth for the UK in the next few years have failed to dampen an optimistic mood at Conviviality, the owner of Bargain Booze shops which has transformed its business in the past 12 months by buying major suppliers to restaurants and supermarkets.

The company, which also owns the Wine Rack chain, said its acquisition of Matthew Clark and Bibendum PLB drinks suppliers had more than doubled it sales.

Conviviality is now the UK’s leading independent wholesaler and distributor of alcohol. Its deal for Matthew Clark sent net sales for the year to 1 May up by 137% on the previous year, to £864.5m. Pre-tax profits rose by 124% to £21.7m.

Net sales will be more than £1.4bn once Bibendum PLB figures are included, Conviviality CEO Diana Hunter said. Integration of the businesses was ‘ahead of expectations’, she said.

Hunter said the company was better equipped to cope following the UK’s Brexit vote to leave the European Union.

‘We look to the year ahead with a stronger and more resilient business able to thrive in uncertain economic times,’ she said.

‘We continue to review the market within which we trade ensuring that we strengthen our position as the UK’s leading drinks and impulse wholesaler and distributor.’

Some experts have warned there will be turbulent times ahead for the British economy.

EY Item Club, which analyses UK government Treasury data, said today that it expects the pound sterling currency to have fallen by 15% over 2016 by the end of the year.

And it expects the economy to grow by 0.4% in 2017, versus its forecast of 2.6% released back in April.

Edited by Chris Mercer

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