Naked Wines launches Text for Wine capability

Customers of online crowdfunded wine retailer Naked Wines can now order products via text message.

Parent company Majestic Wine announced today (24 August) that it has launched the service in pilot mode in the UK, ahead of a potential roll-out worldwide incorporating its US and Australian operations.

Naked's 150,000 UK customers, who are known by the moniker 'Angels', can text an order which then gets added to the retailer's internal system. There is no additional charge for the service, other than standard network rates.

Naked Wines UK managing director, Eamon FitzGerald, said: "Initial uptake has been very encouraging and it's easy to see this service being particularly useful for busy customers who don't have time or access to the website."

Essential Retail recently interviewed Ayo Akintola, managing director of Majestic's UK competitor Oddbins, who admitted that he has identified a number of members of the Naked team who he'd like to employ. Oddbins sent 'love letters' to the staff in question, in an attempt to woo them away from Naked – with Akintola saying: "We wrote to them and said we'd like to have a conversation with them."

The latest innovation from Naked Wines is a clear indication of the tech skillset Majestic acquired, when it bought the company for £70 million earlier this year.

Rowan Gormley, Majestic CEO, said: "Access to Naked's digital marketing skills was a clear benefit for Majestic following the acquisition, and the launch of Text for Wine is a fantastic demonstration of these skills in action.

"The fact that the idea came from an employee is testament to Naked's strong entrepreneurial culture, which we are working on bringing across to Majestic."