When Total Wine began opening stores in the Twin Cities in 2014, many predicted the competition would dwindle as they faced the low-priced behemoth.
Maybe it's too soon to see the fallout, but the predictions haven't come true yet. Only a handful of closings have ocurred. Century Liquor announced its closing in 2015 the day after Total Wine announced it would open a new store in Chanhassen (which opened in 2016).
Customers of Century Liquor received this email: “Last night, the Chanhassen City Council has passed the eighth liquor license within the city limits. With this new development, the owners of Century Wine & Spirits have made the very difficult decision to close the store. After all, there is only so much of the pie that can be truly divided up between all the liquor stores in Chanhassen. Thus, the owners feel they can no longer run a viable business in the future.”
Representatives at Haskell's in Burnsville had a similar story when it closed in early 2015. Haskell's franchisee Jay Nelson told the Sun This Week newspaper at the time that the city of Burnsville was allowing too many liquor licenses (five), making competition fierce.
The latest to close include Cost Plus World Market wine shops in Bloomington and Maple Grove. Both are currently selling everything at 50 percent off and are expected to shut down soon due to limited selection. A staff person in World Market in Bloomington said Monday that business was tough in a spot where they shared the same parking lot as Total Wine. It appears the closer a wine shop or liquor store is to Total Wine the more vulnerable it is.