Asda like-for-likes down 2.9% in golden quarter
Asda has posted a 2.9% decline in fourth quarter like-for-like sales after its performance was set against strong comparatives in the same period in 2020 when the UK was subject to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.
However, sales were up 2.6% when compared to the same period a year earlier.
In a trading update for the year ending 31 December 2021, the supermarket said sales in its Extra Special range were up 28% year-on-year in its fourth quarter as customers splashed out on premium products to the lockdown-free festive period.
During the year, total sales increased by 0.5% to £20.4 billion and by 0.6% on a like-for-like basis. The uplift was driven by a strong performance in home and outdoor categories and a return to growth in clothing after pandemic-related disruption in 2020.
Grocery like-for-like sales decreased by 0.5% in 2021 compared with 2020 when the UK spent most of the year under Covid-19 related restrictions and ate more meals at home. However, like-for-like grocery sales remained strong on a two-year basis with growth of 4.6%.
Looking at online, sales decreased by 5% across the year but were significantly above pre-pandemic levels with an uplift of 75% on 2019.
Meanwhile Asda’s operating profit increased by 42% to £693.1 million in the year due to a reduction in Covid-related costs.
Asda opened 31 Asda On the Move convenience stores in the year in partnership with EG Group. The two businesses have also introduced EG foodservice brands such as Leon, Cinnabon and Sbarro in 17 stores and are aiming to increase this to 100 locations by the end of this year.
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