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Waitrose steps up battle with Tesco


Waitrose is to extend its price match guarantee with Tesco in a bid to win the confidence of budget-conscious shoppers, it has announced.

The upmarket grocery retailer has matched prices on 1,000 branded lines since September 2010 and is now expanding the offer to 7,000 products.

It hopes the move will encourage customers to do their entire weekly shop at Waitrose rather than move between retailers in the hunt for the lowest prices.

Waitrose managing director Mark Price said: "The tough economic climate is putting pressure on everyone, so this is excellent news for customers.

"Extending Brand Price Match today, alongside Essential Waitrose, increased promotions and free delivery for online orders, will give customers even more confidence that they can do their entire weekly shop with us, with no sacrifice of quality, range and inspiration or service."

He said in a letter to customers: "I am pleased to tell you that our prices on branded grocery products are now identical to Tesco's, excluding promotions.

"As you would expect from Waitrose, there are no gimmicks, no coupons to redeem against a later shop, and no need to check your receipt online. We simply match the prices on the shelf, so you benefit immediately."

The move comes after Tesco announced a £1 billion investment in its UK business to revive its flagging domestic operation.

The company promised to accelerate the revamp of its UK stores and hire more staff following falling sales and profits.