Asda sales up 0.5% despite fewer customers visiting stores
Supermarket giant Asda has reported a 0.5% rise in like-for-like sales for the three months to 30 June. However, the retailer¬ís operating income fell due to the $31 million (¬£19million) cost of refurbishing its 147 recently acquired Netto stores.
Asda has grown its sales despite the fact that customers are visiting its stores less often. The supermarket said its customers were “consolidating their trips in the face of high fuel prices”.
The reduced footfall was reflected in the second-quarter customer traffic which was down by 1.2% but this was offset by a 1.7% rise in the average amount spent by shoppers.
Doug McMillon, President & CEO of Asda's parent company Walmart described Asda's performance as “solid”.
McMillon said: “Asda grew expenses slower than sales in the second quarter, leveraging on tight expense management. After excluding the Netto costs, Asda’s expenses declined from last year.
“Adjusting for fuel sales and Netto, Asda grew operating income faster than sales. In the second quarter of this year, comparable sales, excluding fuel, increased 50 basis points. Traffic decreased by 120 basis points and average ticket increased 170 basis points.”
Asda said its new 10% online price guarantee scheme was proving popular with 250,000 shopping baskets being checked by customers every week.
McMillon added: “Economic indicators suggest that 2011 will remain a challenging year for our U.K. consumers, and we’re confident that Asda and its Netto store conversions are entering the second half of the year with good momentum, delivering availability and every day low prices."
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