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Tesco reports strongest UK sales growth for seven years

16 June 2017

Group like-for-like sales increased 1%, representing a sixth consecutive quarter of positive growth.

United Kingdom like-for-like sales were up 2.3 per cent, more than three times the 0.7 per cent recorded in the final quarter of the last financial year.

The company resisted rising inflation across the United Kingdom economy by "working closely with our supplier partners to keep prices low", Chief Executive Officer Dave Lewis said in the statement.

Tesco has released its first quarter results revealing its sixth consecutive quarter of growth hitting analyst expectations.

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The supermarket said it had seen particularly strong growth in fresh produce as it enjoyed like-for-like sales growth of 2.7pc in food, compared to the same time past year.

"Fresh food volumes grew by 1.6% in the quarter, underpinned by further improvements across our customer offer".

The trading update comes after official figures showed a worse than expected fall in retail sales in May as shoppers tighten their belts in response to the squeeze on wages.

It's now going to bring in more price reductions as it looks to highlight healthier food through its "Little Helps to Healthier Living" campaign.

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The news provides some support for the United Kingdom retail sector after a selloff yesterday that was prompted by a downbeat forecast from DFS Furniture Plc, which said sofa sales were getting hit by uncertainty associated with this month's elections and warned of "market-wide" weakness.

Chief executive Dave Lewis said the business, Britain's biggest supermarket, had done well in the first quarter despite "tough market conditions". Food, and fresh food in particular, is firing on all cylinders and that's a huge shot across the bows for its competitors, in particular Morrisons. Against this inflationary backdrop, the numbers are all the more remarkable.

"As inflation continues to erode people's spending power, more and more of Tesco's customers could be driven back to the discounters, Aldi and Lidl".

"He is sticking religiously to the basics of grocery, which is delivering a robust food proposition, keeping keeping prices low and putting a massive focus on customer service".

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Tesco reports strongest UK sales growth for seven years