Office Hours

Total Wine opens one store and says it's not done, and watch out, Costco

Lots of folk hereabouts are excited about the new Total Wine store, on Newport Highway in north Spokane.

Those who aren't are probably working at Costco.

The gigantic Total Wine operation is the gorilla that Costco should have seen coming when Costco spent millions in recent years to get the state out of the liquor business.  While Costco will no doubt make some gains in that new market, Total Wine is clearly going to take away a lot of it and keep it. It is, without a doubt, the nation's largest retailer of spirits based on total volume sold.

Company owner David Trone came to Spokane for last week's opening, and he said another location is on the way, in the Spokane Valley.

Total Wine, he added, will try to clean Costco's clock on pricing and choices in the liquor business.

And meanwhile, just announced it also wants to start selling wine nationally with its online store.

That Amazon online store just opened last week. No reports yet on how good a job it's doing providing good selections and solid delivery. Later this week Office Hours will do some price shopping to see how that store compares.

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Tom Sowa
Tom Sowa covers technology, retail and economic development and writes the Office Hours blog.




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