Asda like-for-likes edge up 0.5% in second quarter
Asda grew its like-for-like sales by 0.5% in the ten weeks to 30 June as the supermarket made changes to its management structure in an attempt to improve operational efficiency.
The supermarket attributed much of the second quarter sales growth to a continued investment of £1 billion in its Everyday Low Prices strategy and said it had extended a ‘price lock’ to 160 lines.
At a briefing Asda chief executive Andy Clarke said: “The last quarter has seen unprecedented change within the food retail sector, and whilst I do not underestimate the challenge currently presenting retailers, I am proud that our business identified and put plans in place to respond to these changes early. We have a clear five year strategy based on Everyday Low Prices and we continue to implement that strategy with agility and pace.”
Clarke said the supermarket was benefiting from the expansion of its click and collect offer which now accounts for 10% of all online orders and is used by more than 20,000 Asda customers per week.
Asda anticipates that click and collect orders will treble in the next five years with 30% of all orders to be collected in Asda stores. In the last three months the supermarket has extended the hours customers are able to collect their shopping on a Sunday by four hours, which has driven a 20% uplift on the day’s orders.
Clarke also spoke of the supermarket’s consultation with staff on a new management structure as it looks to improve operational efficiency. He said the decision to implement the changes was “one of the most difficult decisions of my career” but said the consultation had resulted in the creation of an additional 600 roles. 7,000 managers are currently being trained for new roles that begin in October.
Asda opened three new superstores and two supermarkets in the quarter and also acquired five new sites from The Co-operative Group. It is also planning to open three new stores in the current quarter and will roll out three new ‘format trials’ in stores over the next six months as it looks to test new ideas and innovations for large stores.
Clarke added: “I am pleased with our performance in the quarter and our business has shown that it is well positioned to meet the demands of a challenging market. However, I’ve been in this business for too long to measure success by quarters and we remain on a long term journey.
“Innovation, low prices and customer service remain at the heart of our business and over the coming months and years we will continue to implement and build on this successful strategy as we constantly look at new and improved ways to run our business.”
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