Sainsbury’s PLC (LON:SBRY) traded at 246.80p – 0.04% at 11:05am BST.
In their first quarter trading update, the UK supermarket brand announced that it has seen a 0.8% fall in like for like sales excluding fuel (1%) beating expectations at the end of its first fiscal calendar months ending 4 June 2016.
Improvement in its clothing sales saw a 5% growth with its menswear range proving popular among buyers in its EURO 2016 campaign.
Total retail sales on the other hand were up 0.3% despite the company claiming it has been a “challenging environment” which has seen the food giant embark on a different sales strategy of reducing the price of everyday items in an attempt to match rival discounting brands such Lidl and Aldi.
In an attempt to offer lower prices overall, the company has removed ‘multi-buy’ promotions and brand-matched guarantees. The majority of Multi-buys will be scrapped by August 2016.
Mike Coupe, Chief Executive, said:
“Market conditions remain challenging. Food price deflation continues to impact our sales and pressures on pricing mean the market will remain competitive for the foreseeable future. However, we are confident that our strategy to be a trusted multi-channel, multi-product and services retailer is delivering and will enable us to continue to outperform our major peers.”
The company acknowledges that participation levels in promotional offers in the first quarter has reduced further to 23% following its previous standing at 30% in 2015.
Everyday products such as 1.35kg whole chicken has been reduced from £3.50 to £2.95 with other products such as 12 free range woodland medium eggs reduced from £2.00 to £1.75. Dairy products such as 250g grated Cheddar cheese is down from £2.00 to £1.75.
Sainsbury’s Bank had a ‘good performance’ in its first quarter with a 28% increase in travel money transactions and a 10% increase in Travel Insurance sales.
Online sales were up over 8% in sales growth with almost a 13% rise in orders alongside it’s launch of its online app.
Sainsbury’s second Quarter Trading Statement will be released on 28 September 2016.