Asda profits rise 6.9%

Asda has reported a 6.9% profit surge, defying the economic downturn as shoppers traded down from upmarket supermarkets to its stores. The retailer, owned by Wal-Mart, reported its results for the quarter ended November 2 today (November 13).

Asda’s grocery market share rose to 17.1% in the 12 weeks, from 16.7% a year earlier, according to data from Taylor Nelson Sofres. Asda says its profit rose “ahead of target with good cost control despite rising energy costs”.

Chief financial officer Judith McKenna says the company has delivered a “strong set of numbers” by focusing on giving its customers “great quality and outstanding value at a time when they need them most”.

Asda employs about 165,000 people in more than 350 UK stores. Earlier today, Wal-Mart – the world’s biggest retailer – reported a 9.8% rise in third quarter income to $3.14bn, bolstered by the proceeds from the sale of Gazeley, from $2.86bn a year earlier.

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