Sainsbury’s has grown its profit before tax by 9.1 per cent to £433m in its first half results, as it increased market share to the highest point for a decade.
Total sales (inc VAT and fuel) rose 4.4 per cent to £13.9bn and like-for-like sales increased 1.4 per cent as the grocer registered 35 consecutive quarters of l-f-l sales growth.
Opening up six supermarkets, 50 convenience stores and extending two stores so far this year, Sainsbury’s say they are on track to open two new convenience stores per week and about 1 million sq ft of new space in line with targets.
Sainsbury’s are the only ‘big four’ supermarkets to grow its market share- which now stands at 16.8 per cent.
Phil Dorrel of retail consultants Retail Remedy said Sainsbury’s pricing policy was its key strength in the battle with Tesco and Asda.
“Asda’s one-pricing policy is going to give King the slipstream he needs to overtake Clarke for market share, or at least pull alongside him, and this could be as early as next Summer.
“Because it charges differently in its convenience stores, Sainsbury’s can make more margin and achieve better ROI. Asda is effectively straitjacketed by Walmart’s approach to pricing.”
Sainsbury’s have won supermarket of the year for the sixth time in eight years this year and Convenience Chain of the Year for the fourth year in a row.
Justin King, Chief Executive said in a statement that the company was well placed to deliver to customers.
“Whilst customers? budgets remain tight and any recovery in the economy may take time to take effect, our consistent strategy and strong values-driven culture mean we are well placed to continue to deliver for customers, colleagues and shareholders.”
Interim dividend was up 4.2 per cent to 5p.