John Lewis Partnership posts improved financial performance
The John Lewis Partnership has posted an improved financial performance in the 26 weeks to 29 July with pre-tax losses narrowing from £99.2 million to £59 million.
Losses before tax and exceptional items fell from £66.8 million to £57.3 million.
Meanwhile, total sales edged up 2% to £5.8 billion as the partnership welcomed 600,000 more customers.
As set out in its year-end results in March, the John Lewis Partnership has adapted its ongoing transformation plan to give greater weight to productivity and efficiency under its Lean Simple Fast programme. The partnership now expects to have made over £100 million in efficiency savings by the year-end.
However, the partnership said its transformation plan will take a further two years to deliver due to ongoing inflationary pressures.
Sharon White, chairman of the partnership, said: “The partnership is a unique model that has been tested and come through stronger many times in our 100-year history. While change is never easy – and there is a long road ahead – there are reasons for optimism. Performance is improving. More customers are shopping with us. Trust in the brands and support for the partnership model remain high.”
Waitrose sales rose by 4% to £3.7 billion in the half year with growth driven by an average item price increase of 9%. The supermarket has responded to a slowdown in dining out by introducing ten new ‘dining in’ deals, which has led to a tripling in sales. It is also attracting new customers through expanded collaborations with Dobbies, Shell, Deliveroo and UberEats.
Meanwhile, sales at the John Lewis department store fell by 2% to £2.1 billion as customers spent more on fashion, but became more cautious about big ticket purchases in the home and technology categories.
Looking ahead, the partnership said it expects to deliver a better full year result than the £77.6 million loss before tax, staff bonuses and exceptional items last year.
Nish Kankiwala, chief executive of the John Lewis Partnership, said: “Our transformation to modernise our business is well under way, and I want to thank our partners for their efforts to give customers great service, quality and value when they shop with us in store or online. There are no brands better placed than Waitrose and John Lewis to provide customers with what they need right now – to help them feel good and eat well.”
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