Department store John Lewis saw a strong start to the September trading period as sales rose 15.3 per cent last week compared to the same week last year, figures released today show.
Shoppers seeking back to school items buoyed sales over the weekend, up 20 per cent on a year ago while the latter part of the week to September 1st 2012 saw a further boost as summer holidays came to an end.
At Home stores fared well over the period, with units in Poole, Croydon and Swindon all seeing sales rises of over 20 per cent, while full-line shops performed strongly as Southampton and Reading saw sales increases of 17.5 per cent and 16.2 per cent.
As the first signs of Autumn encouraging customers to spend in stores, sales at jl.com were also boosted, rising over 36 per cent and Chris Hooper, Head of Operational Support at John Lewis, praised its partners for the solid results.
“Obviously, ‘back to school’ was the key theme in Fashion, and well done to everyone involved in delivering ‘Christmas’ for those assortments,” he commented. “Positive scores in a tough market was good reward.
“As you read this, a new and exiting development will have launched in the form of ‘Somerset’ by Alice Temperley – inspired by her love of her home county. A really exciting collaboration for the Fashion team.”
Supermarket chain Waitrose also prospered over the trans-seasonal period, with sales last week up 6.4 per cent on the same period last year as customers stocked up on easy meals.
Sales of pasta, mince and meatballs rose 11 per cent, 17 per cent and 44 per cent respectively while frozen pizza sales increased 14 per cent.
Customers enjoying the sunshine purchased barbeque food, with meat sales rising 29 per cent as ice cream sales improved 19 per cent on last year.
Across its online grocery service, sales soared 50 per cent as a balanced offering drives expansion plans, with Waitrose Marketing Director Rupert Thomas adding: “Last week Waitrose celebrated the opening of its newest branch in Alton, Hampshire, right next to the town’s mainline station and the heritage Watercress Line.”