Sainsbury’s reports sales slowdown

Sainsbury’s has reported a slowdown in like-for-like sales growth in the first three months of its financial year, but insists its performance is “good in a challenging market”.

Sainsbury's

Sales at stores open for more than a year increased 1.4% during the first 12 weeks of the financial year to 9 June. Total sales for first quarter increased 3.6%.

Sainsbury’s reported a 2.6% rise in like-for-like sales in quarter four but CEO Justin King told reporters on a call this morning that its first quarter performance is a good in light of the market conditions.

Non-food sales are growing around 1.5% faster than food sales, and during the quarter Sainsbury’s reported its strongest ever week of sales for clothing, driven by its fourth collection designed by Gok Wan.

Sainsbury’s convenience store business is still outpacing its supermarket division but growth has dropped off slightly, while its online business is growing at around 20%.

King said in a statement: “We have delivered good sales growth in the quarter, in line with our expectations, helping our customers to manage both their weekly budgets, and to celebrate special occasions.

“Customers continued the habit of savvy shopping to save money in order to be able to treat themselves on special occasions, shown by strong sales in the lead up to the Jubilee celebrations.”

Yesterday, Sainsbury’s acquired a 64% stake in e-book retailer Anobii, as part of its efforts to grow its digital entertainment business.

Earlier this week Tesco reported a further dip in sales, marking its fourth consecutive quarter of falling like for like sales.

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