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Midwest Wine Retail Giant: Lukas Wine And Spirits Superstore

March 28, 2016

Harry Lukas has built a monument to drinks retailing in the affluent Kansas City suburb of Overland Park, Kansas. Lukas Wine and Spirits Superstore, which opened last October, spans more than 50,000 square feet—ranking it among the biggest stores in the United States. Wine represents a whopping 52% of sales, while spirits take 30% and beer captures the remaining 18%.

The store, located across from its previous 30,000-square-foot space, is one of two Lukas locations in the Kansas City market. He has a second operation just south of downtown on the Missouri side of the border. Lukas is currently expanding that location from 34,000 square feet to 46,000 square feet. Overall, his goal is to create a retailing stronghold around Kansas City—a market in transition since the venerable Berbiglia Wine & Spirits chain downsized sharply over the past year.

“In the Kansas City market, there are Sam’s Club, Walmart and Costco locations, and we compete easily with all of them on price,” Lukas says. “Expanding is the best investment decision I could make. A store like mine will give any competitor pause before deciding to come here.”

Lukas carries nearly 8,500 SKUs, including 4,800 wines, 2,000 spirits and 1,640 beers, and that total is rising as the shelves fill up at the new store. Gross margins for wine run 23% to 25% on average, while beer and spirits are around 15% or less. SND sister publication Market Watch has more.

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