Colorado Liquor Law and Instant Rebates

Our short story - in Colorado, you can offer consumers instant rebates.  Using the BottleRoom 3 app service, your instant rebates are delivered directly to consumers, and we (as a 3rd party) validate and perform the reimbursement process to the store.


You can find the latest version of the Colorado Liquor Code on their site at: https://colorado.gov/pacific/enforcement/liquor-enforcement-laws-rules-regulations. We are not lawyers and cannot offer legal advice (as our lawyers remind me), but here are what we see are the key points to keep in mind and the sections for the liquor code that applies.

First off, while we call them BottleRoom 3 “deals,” the code refers to them as coupons, so I’ll use that term in this discussion.

This service is enabling “A supplier’s ‘instant redeemable coupon’…” – perfectly legal. Here are a few points to keep in mind:

  • You are providing the coupon directly to consumers (via the BottleRoom 3 app) and not to the liquor store – this is a critical point. It just happens the consumer will be at the store when they receive and use the coupon (which is by far the most effective time & place to deliver it)
  • For a consumer to instantly redeem a coupon, they need to do so at time of purchase and have the deal available on their phone. The deal is only valid for 1 hour of receiving it (ie on that visit), so they can’t print/copy or anything else in order to use it later.
  • We, as a 3rd party, will validate that for each redemption, a consumer was offered (& selected) the deal and purchased the specific product offered by the deal. We’ll use the data we have through our service and data downloaded from the POS to do this process.
  • You as a supplier are not giving the store any money for this service. You are giving the consumer the instant rebate – although the store is in the middle of the transaction.

The rules that apply to this are on pp22-23:

Regulation 47-316, Advertising Practices,

Section B. Point-of-Sale Advertising (ie advertising & promotions within the store)

#4. Supplier Rebates for Consumers and Supplier Coupon

#b. A supplier’s “instant redeemable coupon”…., which includes 5 points

 

Another question that comes up is “Am I a supplier?”  Basically if your products are sold off-premise and you’re not the store, then you are a supplier.  This is defined in 47-100, Definitions (pp2-3). To oversimplify it a bit, if you’re a distributor, then you’re a “wholesaler” but also a “supplier.”  Here’s the two definitions from the code:

  • F: “Supplier”means a Colorado licensed brewery, winery, distillery, brew pub, distillery pub, vintner’s restaurant, limited winery, nonresident manufacturer, wholesaler or importer of alcohol beverages.
  • I: “Wholesaler”means those entities authorized to sell alcohol beverages at wholesale to licensed retailers, including wholesalers of fermented malt beverages, malt liquors, vinous and spirituous liquors, limited wineries, brew pubs, distillery pubs, and vintner's restaurants.

 

I’m not lawyer and can’t offer legal advice (which my lawyers remind me), but you’ll see this is all A-OK because you’re providing the coupons directly to consumers and a 3rd party is validating & servicing reimbursements.


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