Fashion and homewares were the top performers in John Lewis’ half-year results, as total sales rose 15 per cent.
Sales in fashion were up 19 per cent during H1 while Home Direct sales rose by 16.7 per cent during the same period.
Weekly results published today show a recent slowdown in trade for the retailer however, with only a 5.3 per cent increase for the week ending July 31st 2010 compared to the same period in 2009.
Andy Street, John Lewis CEO, said: “Reviewing the half as a whole, Partners should be proud of their part in our surge in sales. Overall we finished at +14.9 per cent (12.6 per cent excluding VAT) and notably +11.4 per cent over 2008’s pre-recession figures.”
“Those results show us winning market share in each of our buying groups; fashion, home and EHT; an enormous credit to Jill Little in her final season as Merchandise Director.”
Street is cautious regarding future results, with comparables becoming stronger in the next half.
He commented: “I suspect we won’t finish with another 15 per cent advance, so enjoy this one.”
In Waitrose results, weekly sales rose 9.3 per cent from last year continuing their good recent performance. Fruit and vegetables performed very well with prepared salads up 37 per cent and side salads rising 50 per cent.
Tony Solomons, Retail Director for Waitrose, added: “Sales of melons and pineapples grew by 32 per cent. Water melons were the most popular, increasing by an impressive 187 per cent.
“This was followed by Cantaloupe melons, up by 81 per cent and Galia, up by 57 per cent. However, large pineapples stole the show with a volume increase of 194 per cent year-on-year.”