Sainsbury’s sales fall behind rival grocers

Sainsbury’s sales figures dipped in the past three months while rivals like Tesco and Lidl continue to grow, according to the latest figures from Kantar Worldpanel.

Shoppers spent 6% more on spirits this summer, and gin sales alone have increased by £38 million and 1.7 million litres, while soft drinks were up 7% in the last 12 weeks to June.

Sainsbury’s was the only big four retailer to see its sales tumble, with a fall of 0.2%. Revenue grew by 1.4% at Tesco, however, with the strongest performance in its Express convenience stores.

Meanwhile Asda, which announced a merger with Sainsbury’s in April, saw its sales increase by 1.8%, although both retailers’ market shares dipped slightly over the past three months.

Among the big four supermarkets, Morrisons was again the fastest growing, posting a sales increase of 1.9% – narrowly behind the overall market.

“Potential partners Asda and Sainsbury’s have recorded quite different performances over the past 12 weeks,” said analyst Fraser McKevitt.

“More than a quarter of a million new customers have helped Asda increase sales by 1.8% – its 16-period run of growth is the longest the retailer has achieved since March 2014. In contrast, Sainsbury’s sales fell by 0.2%.

“The grocer sold an extra £60 million of goods on promotion this year and while this helped attract 159,000 new customers and the retailer simultaneously delivered a strong online performance, Sainsbury’s overall share fell by 0.4 percentage points to 15.6%.”

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