Saturday, August 17, 2019

Allocation and fresh food drive Southern Co-op‘s Christmas profits


The Southern Co-operative is celebrating a bumper Christmas trading period following investment in more competitive pricing, improved product ranges and “tailoring the right range to the right store”. 

The chain, an independently owned regional co-operative society of around 150 community stores, grew like-for-like sales by 4.7% in the 3 weeks to 3 January. 

“These are our best Christmas trading results for some years, reflecting the hard work and enthusiasm of our colleagues across The Southern Co-operative,” said Chief Executive Mark Smith. “Our latest figures build on an improving trend in our sales during the autumn and provide an ideal platform for us to enter 2016 from.” 

During the Christmas week itself the retailer served an additional 80,000 customers. 

Amongst the ranges offered by the Southern Co-op, fresh food categories enjoyed the biggest like-for-like increase at 10%, with chilled product sales rising 8%. Over the three weeks, total volume of sales jumped by 20% compared to the same period last year. 

Similarly, the ‘Local Flavours‘ range was increasingly popular, and continued investment saw the category grow by 10%. Other popular products included freshly baked goods and alcohol. 

“Our team should be proud to have achieved such strong results in a fiercely competitive market,” Smith continued. “We expect the sector to remain just as competitive throughout 2016, but with the benefit of the enhanced Co-operative Food range4s and our investment in sharper pricing, we expect to continue to deliver core sales growth alongside our ambitious plans for additional new stores in the year ahead.”