Sainsburys Reports Strong Second Quarter Sales

Sainsbury’s has announced rival-beating sales growth for the second quarter of 2010.
The supermarket giant experienced a 2.9 per cent rise in like-for-like sales, excluding fuel, across its stores during the 16 weeks to 2 October, compared to 1.1 per cent in the previous quarter.
Total sales in the second quarter increased from 4.4 per cent in the first quarter to 5.2 per cent, excluding fuel .
Sainsburys said business had been boosted by the relaunch of its £1bn Taste the Difference premium food range in September, the addition of 460,000 sq ft of retail space and buoyant non-food sales .
The retailer revealed that non-food sales were growing three times as fast as its grocery division, thanks largely to its Tu clothing range.
It added that online sales were also performing well, increasing by 25 per cent over the quarter, and that annual sales at its convenience chain (Sainsburys Local) had exceeded £1bn.
Commenting on the strong figures, Sainsbury’s chief executive Justin King said: “It is very clear that we have reported the best performance [of the big four supermarkets ] over the last three to four months. When you look at everybody, we’re not a nose ahead – we are a good way ahead.”
He added: “We expect the consumer environment to remain challenging and will continue to work hard to deliver universal appeal through providing great value, great quality products to our customers.”
The second quarter trading figures come a day after rival Tesco announced a 1.3 per cent quarter-on-quarter gain in UK sales .