Tesco Posts Fastest Sales Growth Since June: Kantar Worldpanel

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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Tesco Posts Fastest Sales Growth Since June: Kantar Worldpanel

Tesco has posted its fastest sales growth since June 2017, seeing sales up 3.1% in the 12 weeks to 31 December, according to the latest UK market share data by Kantar Worldpanel.

The retailer, which sits on 28.0% market share, was boosted by a 6.4% increase in sales of standard Tesco own label during the period, while its convenience store portfolio also benefited from longer opening hours on Christmas Eve, which fell on a Sunday.

However, Tesco’s market share is 20 basis points lower than at this time last year (28.2%).

The Chasing Pack

Sainsbury's, the UK's number two supermarket, grew its sales by 2.0% in the period, performing strongly across convenience stores, larger supermarkets and online deliveries.  The retailer saw its market share fell by 30 basis points to 16.4% during the period.

Asda’s sales grew by 2.2%, on the back of a strong online performance which saw the retailer’s average shopping basket increase to just over 16 items, Kantar Worldpanel said. Despite this, the grocer’s market share dropped by 20 basis points to 15.3%.


Morrisons, which published its Christmas sales results today, increased sales by 2.1%, however, it too saw a 20 basis point decline.

Elsewhere, sales at Waitrose increased by 2.3%, but fell by 0.2% at Co-op, as the retailers captured 5.2% and 5.8% of the market respectively. Iceland grew sales by 2.9%.

Discounter Growth

Aldi and Lidl remain the UK's fastest growing supermarkets, with both posting 16.8% growth during the period.

Aldi increased market share by 80 basis points year on year to capture 6.8% of the market, while Lidl grew market share by 60 basis points to stand at 5.0%.


"In some ways Christmas is a tricky time for the discounters: they tend to lose a little market share compared to earlier in the year as many shoppers return to the more traditional supermarkets in search of old favourites," said Kantar Worldpanel's Fraser McKevitt.

"Rising to the challenge, Aldi and Lidl collectively managed to attract nearly one million additional households during the past three months."

Overall Sales

Overall, supermarket sales increased in value by 3.8% over the period, with shoppers spending an additional £1 billion compared to the same period last year.

“Shoppers parted with £747 million on 22 December alone, making the Friday before Christmas the busiest shopping day ever recorded,” said McKevitt.


“For most of the year, location tends to be the most important factor in choosing where to shop, but over Christmas customers are actually prepared to travel further in search of specific festive products or better value.”

Food price inflation increased by ten basis points to +3.7%.

Commenting on the figures, Bruno Monteyne of Bernstein Research said, "While inflation is in line with total market growth, there is still volume growth as consumers dial out 50% or more of the food inflation through product switching. We expect inflation will drop during the year once the (lagged) FX impact starts to fall away."

© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine

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