Tesco yesterday pledged to continue investing in its offer in Ireland after reporting another marginal improvement in performance.
Whilst still lagging behind SuperValu and Dunnes in a highly competitive market, Tesco Ireland saw its like-for-like sales over the half year period to 27 August edging up 0.2% (+0.3% in Q1 and +0.1% in Q2). Overall turnover was flat at just €1.22bn, although this compares with a fall of nearly 4% for the same period last year.
The group stated that customer perception of its proposition had improved significantly year-on-year, and whilst top-line growth in value terms was held back by investment in lower prices, it retained its leading position in volume terms thanks to a robust performance in fresh food. Tesco added that there was also strong growth in its online shopping business.
“This is our third successive quarter of positive like-for-like sales and we’re pleased to see strong positive volume growth as a result of our investment in strengthening our customer offer,” said Tesco Ireland Chief Executive Andrew Yaxley.
“We continue to invest significantly in reducing prices for customers through our ‘Staying Down’ campaign. We’ve also improved the quality of our fresh food produce, simplified our range, and extended our lines of Tesco own-label products.”
Recent data from Kantar Worldpanel showed that Tesco’s share of the Irish grocery market has fallen from 22.9% to 21.1% over the last year, with the fast-growing Dunnes now joining it in second place behind SuperValu.