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Shares in FTSE 100 supermarket chain Sainsbury’s (LON:SBRY) dropped 1.04% to 228.60p (as of 13:30 GMT) as total retail sales declined by 0.7% for the 15 weeks ended 4th January. Grocery sales were up by 0.4%, driven by strong online growth, but general merchandising continued to struggle.
CEO Mike Coupe commented: “We gave our customers a great combination of quality food at good prices this Christmas and we delivered a standout performance operationally. We have a real sense of momentum in Sainsbury’s and investment in our stores and improvements to service and availability have led to our highest customer satisfaction scores of the year.
“Our digital investments are also paying off and over 20% of our business was online in the quarter. Groceries Online had record order numbers throughout the Christmas period and customers are increasingly choosing to shop with SmartShop in our supermarkets. Argos had its biggest digital Black Friday to date and record sales through mobile and via Argos Click and Collect1. 32 million customers shopped with us across Sainsbury’s and Argos in the key Christmas week.
“The colder weather helped to deliver strong clothing sales in the quarter and our Christmas, party and gifting ranges were all popular with customers. Argos outperformed the market in consumer electronics, but the toy and gaming markets declined year on year“.