Moosomin liquor permit up for auction Feb. 7, Esterhazy up for auction Feb. 13
January 16, 2023, 1:19 pm
Sierra D'Souza Butts, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
The Government of Saskatchewan’s auctions to sell the permits associated with SLGA Retail stores will begin Feb. 6. The auctions will be staggered, with the final auctions beginning Feb. 15.
The auction for the SLGA retail store permit in Moosomin will start on Feb. 7 and end on Feb. 16.
As for the SLGA retail store permit in Esterhazy will begin on Feb. 13 and end on Feb. 22.
Auctions will be held on line at: mcdougallauction.com in real time. The auction will also be open to the public with bids being visible as they are made.
The auctions are for the liquor permits only – there are no buildings, fixtures or inventory included in the sale.
The building property’s associated with the SLGA Retail stores will be sold separately from the permits being sold, which will begin after March 31 after all of the government liquor stores are officially closed.
Properties will be made available for sale through the government’s asset disposal processes and commercial realtors. The empty physical buildings do not include a liquor permit.
Regulations for people who want to bid
Anyone can participate in the public auction process, yet successful bidders will need to meet the qualifications of holding a retail store permit.
Interested bidders must preregister on the auctioning site, and pay a $5,000 deposit to participate in an auction.
The deposit will be refunded to individuals who are not the successful bidder after the auction is completed.
Can someone own more than one retail store permit in an area?
An individual or business may apply for the SLGA retail store permit bid as long as they do not own all of the liquor permits within that community.
As such, if there are three SLGA retail store permits in one community, then an individual or business may own two out of those three, as long as they do not own and operate all of the stores in the community.
If the successful bidder wishes to sell the permit, they can after completing the permit process and having a retail store opened within 18 months of the auction closing.
The successful bidder must also open the retail store within 18 months of the auction closing. If the store does not open, the permit would revert to SLGA and be made available in a future auction.
Winning bidder must meet SLGA requirements
During the auctions, the highest bid made will give the individual/business the opportunity to formally apply for the retail store permit within that area.
However to hold the retail store permit, the successful bidder must meet all of the SLGA requirements which can be found at www.slga.com
The winning bidder must also pay a bidder’s premium (auction fee) which is 15 per cent to a maximum of $750, as well a permit application fee of $525, and an annual permit fee ($525 city/$263 town/$158 village).
The bidder’s premium of $750 (plus GST) must be paid within three days of the auction closing. Payment of the winning bid is as follows:
Within 30 days after the conclusion of the auction, 25 per cent of the total bid amount must be paid
Within the 12 months after the conclusion of the auction, an additional 50 per cent of the total bid amount must be paid
At the earlier of 18 months from the conclusion of the auction, or the effective date of the new Retail Store Permit, the remaining 25 per cent of the total bid must be paid off
In late October, the Government of Saskatchewan announced completely closing all of SLGA’S current retail stores due to year over year declines in net revenue at SLGA retail.
Minister Responsible for SLGA Lori Carr, said it would be best for the government to use those financial resources for other priorities across the province by completing the transition of liquor retailing to the private sector in 2023, and to mitigate future losses.
In 2018-19, profits were $9.4 million and in 2021-22, profits declined to $3.2 million. SLGA Retail’s projected net income for 2022-23 is $395,000.
There are approximately 600 liquor retailers currently operation in Saskatchewan, including the 34 SLGA stores.
The closing of all SLGA stores will vary, with all stores being closed by March 31, 2023.