Morrison’s was named as the only major supermarket in the UK to experience a sales growth during January.
The head of retailer and business insight at Nielsen UK, Mike Watkins, has not revealed the size of the sales growth experienced by Morrison’s, but has suggested that the chain gained benefit from the launch of its Match & More loyalty card scheme.
For the quarter to the end of January, Asda was the worst performing chain, with sales declining by 1.9%. Sainsbury’s experienced a decline of 1.6% for the same period, Tesco declined by 1.2% and Morrison’s saw a decrease of 0.2%.
Unfortunately, this increase in sales comes too late for the exiting chief executive of the group, Dalton Philips.
Analysts have warned that the performance of Morrison’s only appears to be good when compared to its poor trading record during last year. Bernstein Research said that if this effect was considered, Morrison’s is still falling behind its main rivals even though it is already almost one year into its new strategy.
The new Morrison’s chairman, Andy Higginson, is said to be very close to appointing a new CEO as it struggles to cope with the increased popularity of Lidl and Aldi, and the revival of Tesco.
Aldi and Lidl now have control of more than 10% of the grocery market, and continue to enjoy huge sales growth while their rivals struggle along.
Consumers have changed their shopping habits in a bid to save money and are now making use of these discount supermarket chains as part of their regular grocery shopping expeditions. The ‘big four’ supermarkets have experience a decline in sales for the quarter ended 31 January. The value of sales declined by 0.1% at Morrison’s, Sainsbury’s, Asda and Tesco, even though there was an increase of 1.7% in the number of items sold.