Sainsbury's sales down for sixth consecutive quarter due to supermarket price war

Supermarket recorded a 2.1% drop in like-for-like sales in first quarter of the year

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The Independent Online

Sainsbury's has recorded its sixth consecutive quarterly loss as the supermarket price war, which has seen stores sell food for less than it's worth, takes its toll.

Sainsbury's, like its rivals Tesco, Asda, Morrisons, has been lowering prices in an attempt to take on discounters like Aldi and Lidl who have been steadily encroaching on their market share.

Sainsbury's boss Mike Coupe said price wars plus strong levels of food deflation had impacted trading conditions and led to a 2.1% drop in like-for-like sales.

Including fuel, sales were down 3.7%.

Sainsbury's has already predicted that its full-year like-for-like sales will be lower, with food deflation, driven by falling commodity prices, persisting for another year.

“Trading conditions are still being impacted by strong levels of food deflation and a highly competitive pricing backdrop,” Coupe said.

Sainsbury's, which reported its first annual loss in a decade last month, has already outlined steps it will take to adapt to the new shape of the industry.

As well as lowering prices, it has been rolling out click and collect, expanding its convenience store operations and increasing quality of around 3000 products.

Coupe said the grocer had already made some of the progress.

“[We] are encouraged by some of the early trends that we are seeing in our key trading and operational metrics.”

“Despite the challenging market conditions, we are confident that we are building on strong foundations and making good progress with our strategy.”