Liquor company eyes Palmerston North

23:00, Nov 27 2013

A company with connections to a failed bid for a liquor store in Bulls has its sights set on Palmerston North.

Pangotra Holdings (Palmerston North) has applied to open a Sai Wholesale Liquor store on Rangitikei St, next to Warehouse Stationery.

There are multiple Sai Wholesale Liquor outlets in Taranaki, and an application has been made to build another one in Hawera.

In July last year, Nipun Sharma had his bid to open a Sai Wholesale in Bulls rejected when the Liquor Licensing Authority decided he did not have the right character to expand his operations.

Companies Office records show Mr Sharma stopped being a director and shareholder of the companies behind the various Sai Wholesale Liquor outlets in October.

Sahil Sharma is now listed as the owner and director in place of Nipun Sharma, and told the Manawatu Standard he was operating the businesses differently from his predecessor.


Previously a manager at one of the Sai Wholesale Liquor stores, he had worked his way up through the company, he said.

"What [Nipun] did and his approach was his decision as a totally different person. Two sets of hands can be very different."

He, too, is dealing with community opposition.

Reports from the Taranaki Daily News say Hawera residents are concerned about a store Sahil Sharma wants to build there, mainly because it would be in the same area as two existing liquor stores.

He said the Palmerston North store would focus on the top-shelf liquor market, along with craft beers and ciders.

"People always like variety."

If the store was approved, it would sponsor various community projects, he said.

The district licensing authority has not received any submissions opposing the store.

Palmerston North Police Sergeant Jeff Veale said they did not have grounds to oppose Sahil Sharma's application at the moment.

"We do not believe the location will have a huge impact."

But police were still investigating the situation, he said.

Submissions close tomorrow.

Manawatu Standard