Coles Liquor welcomes Adrian Alagaratnam to leadership team as new Head of Finance 

April 17, 2024
By Cody Profaca

Coles Liquor has announced that Adrian Alagaratnam will be taking over as Coles Liquor’s Head of Finance, effective immediately. 

In this role, Adrian will be responsible for overseeing the end-to-end financials of Coles’ liquor department and for driving commercial performance. 

“I’m excited to be joining Coles Liquor at a time when the business is making great progress on becoming a simpler, more accessible, locally relevant drinks specialist,” said Adrian when asked about the appointment. 

“I’m looking forward to providing financial stewardship to the business as we work hard to deliver on our strategic ambition to provide our customers with great value drink solutions for every occasion across our 960 stores and online.” 

Adrian Alagaratnam is arriving to the position after more than a year as Head of Finance at Coles Group’s Packaged Business Units, prior to which which he worked for over seven and a half years across various Officeworks and Australia Post leadership positions.

The new appointee is also returning to Coles’ financial divisions after almost 10 years, after having started his career in finance and logistics at the company between 2011 and 2015. 

His appointment follows on from Coles Liquor’s strong performance over the first half of the 2024 financial year reporting period. The results, which were released late February, revealed a total revenue of $2 billion, a 1.8% increase on the previous reporting period. When excluding bulk sales, this growth extends to 2.4%. 

According to CEO Leah Weckert, Coles Group’s focus on appealing to its value-oriented customers was paramount to its strong performance. 

“Over the last six months, we lowered the prices of hundreds of products through our “Great Value, Hands Down” campaign and we delivered additional value through a wide range of Exclusive to Coles products, weekly specials, and our Flybuys loyalty program,” she said at the time of releasing the half yearly results.

“We understand the cost of living pressures that many of our customers face, such as higher rent, mortgage, energy, and other household bills.” 

In its half yearly results, Coles Liquor e-commerce saw a 14.9% growth in revenue and 6.4% growth in penetration.

Michael Courtney, CEO of Coles Liquor, recently outlined what its renewed focus on omnichannel growth will entail during a keynote speech at the Drinks Association’s February Network Breakfast.

“Our vision for Coles Liquor is to be a simpler, more accessible and locally relevant drinks specialist,” said Courtney.

“Our strategy is supported by a ‘win together’ principle, which is around team, community, and suppliers. And it’s supported by our foundations, which are financial discipline, technology and data.”

For a better understanding of the motives behind Coles Liquor’s omnichannel focus read through this Drinks Trade article

It is expected that Coles Liquor will continue its focus on e-commerce growth underneath the new financial leadership of Adrian Alagaratnam.

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