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Tesco powers ahead at Christmas

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The UK’s largest supermarket, Tesco, said that it had enjoyed a “record” Christmas trading period with strong growth across all sectors, with like-for-like sales excluding petrol rising by 5.9% in the six weeks to 6th January.

Sales were powered by Tesco’s premium “Finest” range and its organic foods, which are currently the subject of massive UK investment. “Organic sales were up by 39%, and our ‘Finest’ meat and poultry ranges shot up by a very healthy 55%,” said a spokesperson for the company.

Online sales also recorded strong growth as consumers made the most of their saving and investment in IT. Sales were up more than 30% to over £150m, and the store reported that its grocery team delivered more than 14 million items in its busiest ever Christmas week.

Tesco added that its overseas businesses also traded briskly over the holiday period, with international sales up by 15.8%. Total group sales, excluding petrol, were up 9.9% over the period. If petrol sales are factored in, group sales rose 9.5%.

Industry experts TNS said that Tesco’s market share of the shopping arena in the UK actually increased over the holiday, with the retailer enjoying a 31.4% share of sales in the 12 weeks ending 31st December.


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