Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Success and Failure

Quiz time boys and girls!  We are going to look at how to do things, and how to do things right. A tale of two (or more) control states. Record your answers and see how you did (some questions have more than one correct answer, but here's a tip: Pennsylvania is never the winning choice).

1.) This control state never had the FBI investigate their senior management in the last 20 years.
Pennsylvania did, and the investigation is ongoing.

2.) This state didn't have have senior management plead guilty to graft
Pennsylvania did.

3.) Pennsylvania spent $4 million (with an out-of-state marketing firm) to rename the State Stores. (Again!)
This state didn't.

4.) This state has people specifically travel to it for great booze prices.
Pennsylvania has people specifically leave it for great booze prices.

5.) This state " aggressively pursues a strategy that provides you with the best possible value."
Pennsylvania? Too lazy to try (and proud of it!).

6.) This state sells a 1.75L bottle of Jack Daniel's regularly for the same price Pennsylvania advertises as a "sale price." (And their sale price is $12 less than Pennsylvania's regular price!)

7.) Pennsylvania has the most liquor border bleed per capita in the U.S.
This state has the most reverse booze border bleed per capita in the U.S.

8.) This state won an award for being innovative in liquor and wine ordering (in control states).
Pennsylvania came in third...over a year later.

9.) Pennsylvania has one liquor store for every 21,000 residents.
This state has 20% more stores per capita.

10.) This state has 2 stores over 20,000 square feet in retail space, and a third that is over 33,000 square feet is being built.
Pennsylvania has one store in the entire state over 15,000 square feet. (And is a much, much larger state, with just under ten times the population of the other state.)

11.) The full time employees of this state generate 3 times the sales of the full time employees of Pennsylvania's State Store System.
The PLCB ended the last fiscal year almost $240 million in the hole.

Did you write down your answers? Let's see how you did!

1.) You could pick any other control state except North Carolina.
2.) Yup, any other control state except North Carolina.
3.) Any other control state.
4.) New Hampshire is famously New England's liquor store of choice.
5.) New Hampshire again.
6.) New Hampshire (as of 6/20/2016 PA regular price is $46.95, sale price $42.95. New Hampshire regular price is $42.99 and their sale price is $34.99. If you buy six, it's almost worth the trip!)
7.) Pennsylvania loses a huge amount of revenue to border bleed, while New Hampshire, with a population of about 12% of the Commonwealth, sells over 250% as much wine and spirits per capita (it ain't consumption, either: they have a slightly lower DUI rate). Over half of New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlet customers are from out of state.
8.) New Hampshire: innovative, Pennsylvania: wine kiosks and cost overruns.
9.) New Hampshire (1,350,000 residents / 79 stores) v. Pennsylvania (12.750,000 residents / 605 stores): not even close, New Hampshire wins again!
10.) New Hampshire: getting the picture?
11.) New Hampshire wins again: $647,000,000 in sales with only 305 full time employees = $2,131,000 per employee (right, over 2 million per employee). Pennsylvania? With $2,340,000,000 in sales and a bloated 3,100 full time employees, that's only $755,000 per employee. Sad.

Which state is a success and which is a failure? See, it's not even about Pennsylvania being a control state, it's about Pennsylvania being a lousy control state! If the Pennsylvania State Stores ran as well as the New Hampshire Liquor and Wine Outlets (er...and the taxes were similarly reasonable), this blog would never have started.

When you can't even do wrong right...time to give up. Privatize, because you will never "modernize" to the same level as New Hampshire. (Mostly because by the time the PLCB got there, New Hampshire would be 30 years ahead again.)

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