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Spar reports buoyant Christmas and New Year trading

Spar has reported a 2.3% year-on-year increase in Christmas and New Year sales, which was an increase of 13.2% on pre-pandemic figures. In the four weeks… View Article

FOOD & DRINK

Spar reports buoyant Christmas and New Year trading

Spar has reported a 2.3% year-on-year increase in Christmas and New Year sales, which was an increase of 13.2% on pre-pandemic figures.

In the four weeks to 2 January 2022, the total grocery category rose by 14% year-on-year. Medicines had the highest year-on-year sales rise (+47%), with cold and flu remedies driving this growth. Baby products sales grew by 25% year-on-year, with baby food up by 24% year-on-year, Spar revealed.

The symbol group reported that total fresh sales grew by 7.1% year-on-year.

Louise Hoste, Spar UK managing director, said: “Our Christmas trading results are confirmation of how Spar continues to lead the convenience store and symbol market According to Nielsen Scan Track data, it shows that in the four weeks to 1st January, the c-store market was up +2.1% and symbols as a whole was down -2.5%. Our YOY sales grew by +2.3%.

“Our busiest days during the four week period were Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve in cash sales and number of transactions showing how shoppers are motivated to use our stores.”

The Spar own label Christmas packaged lines and in particular the savoury range and the new party food lines, performed very well. The ‘2 for £2’ was a very popular price mechanism.

“We had a really strong Christmas week for Spar brand sales, which were up +5.4% YOY and +26% YOYOY,” added Hoste. “Spar Brand continues to deliver growth. It is worth over £350m annually and is the twentieth biggest selling food brand in the UK,” she said.

“We have a great pipeline of development, covering a number of categories coming up in the next few months. We have had a great response from shoppers to our relaunched paperware range and additions to our frozen category.

“We are the first grocer in the UK to make our full range of own label wines suitable for vegans and we have recently brought a brand new own label range of pet food to stores,” she added.

Last May, Spar announced it would invest £125m into stores and improve its supply chain and IT capability in order to support retailers. The symbol group is more than half way through that process.

Investment has been made in store developments all over the UK.

James Hall & Co invested in community store retailing, the Henderson Group opened 28 new stores in Northern Ireland last year and has plans to spend more than £50m on infrastructure, marketing, new products and ranges this year.

AF Blakemore launched a purpose-built, 165,000sq ft distribution depot in Bedford, while Appleby Westward and CJ Lang have invested in new delivery fleets and new retailer recruitment support.

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