Sainsbury’s has confirmed its recovery plan is "on track" as it delivered a strong first-half performance with underlying profits increasing by over 60%.
The UK’s third-largest retailer unveiled a massive 123% increase in pre-tax profits in the 28 weeks to October 7, rising from £87m to £194m, with underlying profits jumping to £189m before tax.
The supermarket, which is midway through its three-year recovery plan, delivered a jump in first-half sales up 8.3% to over £9.5bn.
Moreover, the retailer has delivered £1.3bn of additional sales over the past 18 months: a sign that it is on the way to meeting its target of boosting sales by £2.5bn within the three-year time frame.
The growth was largely driven by its focus on "quality fresh food" and "try something new" positioning while it also continued to build on its non-food offering.
Sainsbury’s chief executive Justin King, says: "A strong performance on food, together with good performances from online and non-food, have driven higher sales densities, which are up 5.6 per cent."
Sainsbury’s has also reached operating level break even at its banking arm, which posted an operating loss of £5m in the same period last year.