Sainsbury turns in £809m profit

Sainsbury re-asserted its position as the UK's most profitable grocery retailer yesterday, though it is still lagging behind arch rival Tesco in the battle for share of the UK's fiercely competitive grocery market.

Sainsbury yesterday disclosed pre-tax profits for the year of £809.2m, comfortably exceeding the £595m announced last month by Tesco.

Chairman David Sainsbury said that group sales growth to £12bn gave Sainsbury a share of 11.7 per cent, according to figures compiled by the Central Statistical Office, compared to 11.4 per cent enjoyed by Tesco. However, figures compiled by research group AGB show Sainsbury lying second behind Tesco.

Over the year, Sainsbury saw like-for-like sales increase by 1.1 per cent, only half that achieved by Tesco. Since the year end, Sainsbury has increased sales by just 2.3 per cent while Tesco, buoyed by the success of its loyalty card, has seen sales rise by seven per cent.

David Sainsbury admitted the launch of Tesco's Club Card had an effect on Sainsbury's sales, but said the impact was only around one per cent.

He also shrugged off the importance of the market share squabble. "The question is having profitable market share," he said. He said much of Tesco's success had been achieved by heavy advertising and launching the card, which would prove expensive to administer.

Mr Sainsbury also declined to commit himself to the UK launch of a Sainsbury loyalty card. Sainsbury has its Saver Card in 55 stores but only uses it "tactically" in new stores or those where competition is intense. The cards run for a few months.

Sainsbury said yesterday it plans to open only 12 new superstores this year, compared to 20 last year. More attention will be paid to refurbishments and extensions. Sainsbury says it will continue to focus on out-of-town developments rather than copy the Tesco Metro format of smaller, city- centre stores.

Sainsbury is continuing to expand its own brand products. Performers nappies and First Menu baby foods were launched during the year.

At Texas Homecare, the DIY chain acquired from Ladbrokes earlier this year, accountants are haggling over the final amount for the chain, expected to fetch £290m. Sainsbury says a decision on store closures next week would affect fewer than first thought.

Investment column, page 34

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Sport
England's women celebrate after their 3rd place play-off win against Germany
Women's World CupFara Williams converts penalty to secure victory and bronze medals
Arts and Entertainment
Ricardo by Edward Sutcliffe, 2014
artPortraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb go on display
News
newsHillary Clinton comments on viral Humans of New York photo of gay teenager
Arts and Entertainment
The gang rape scene in the Royal Opera’s production of Gioachino Rossini’s Guillaume Tell has caused huge controversy
music
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Sales Assistant / Buyer

£15000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company offers a range of ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisor

£15000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisors are r...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: SThree were established in 1986....

Recruitment Genius: Compliance Manager

£40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Compliance Manager is require...

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'