Belfast Telegraph

Lidl marches ahead as sales grow 12.2%

By Josie Clarke

Discount supermarket Lidl enjoyed sales growth of 12.2% UK-wide as grocery sales accelerated at their fastest pace since March, figures show.

Grocery sales rose 0.3% in the 12 weeks to August 14 as the sunshine encouraged shoppers to spend more, with the discounters Lidl and Aldi winning market share and sales growth of 12.2% and 10.4% respectively, Kantar Worldpanel said.

German giant Lidl currently has 38 stores in Northern Ireland, and its regional director Conor Boyle has told the Belfast Telegraph the company hopes to open a further 12 during the coming years.

Kantar Worldpanel's figures showed no evidence of Brexit-fuelled inflation causing food prices to rise, with a representative basket of goods 1.3% cheaper than it was last year.

Market leader Tesco was the best performer of the big four supermarkets, with a sales drop of 0.4%, followed by Sainsbury's, down 0.6%, and Morrisons, which saw sales fall by 1.8%.

Sales at The Co-op rose by 2.8% compared with last year, taking its market share to 6.6% - its highest since 2012.

Asda's decline of 5.5% remains unchanged from last month, making it the poorest performer.

Waitrose sales rose by 1.4% with market share at 5.1%.

Promotional sales dropped to 37.7%, their lowest level since September 2010, as the major retailers continued to move towards simpler pricing models.

Meanwhile, rival research group Nielsen said it was re-assuring to see the industry return to cash growth, helped by the good weather.

It additionally reported improving momentum at Tesco and an "outstanding" performance by The Co-op, while its figures also showed Asda lagging behind the market with sales down 5.6%.

Belfast Telegraph