Sir Ken takes stake in Morrisons’
‘well-run’ store rival Sainsbury’s

Sir Ken Morrison has purchased a stake in Sainsbury's.
Sir Ken Morrison has purchased a stake in Sainsbury's.
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Sir Ken Morrison, the outspoken ​former chairman of​ Morrisons​,​​ has bought a multi-million pound stake in rival Sainsbury’s.

​The news came to light on the day that Bradford-based Morrisons was relegated from the ​London Stock Exchange’s elite FTSE 100 index​ following falling sales, profits and market share.

​Sir Ken and his son William have acquired 4.7 million shares in Sainsbury’s, giving them a £12m stake in the firm.

Sainsbury’s is the only one of the big four supermarkets to be gaining market share while rivals Tesco, Asda and Morrisons lose shoppers to discounters Aldi and Lidl.

​Sir Ken holds 2.6 million shares worth £6m and has given Mike Coupe, the chief executive at Sainsbury’s​,​ his public backing.​ Sir Ken’s son William holds the remainder.​

Sir Ken purchased his stake around April last year​, before the appointment of David Potts as Morrisons’ new chief executive.

Speaking about the Sainsbury’s share purchase, Sir Ken said: “It is a well-run company​.”

Asked whether the share purchase was a sign of his approval for Mr Coupe’s strategy, Sir Ken said: “You interpret it how you want.”

Morrisons​, t​he UK’s fourth biggest grocer​,​ was replaced ​in the FTSE 100 yesterday ​by credit lender Provident​ ​Financial, which is also based in Bradford.

The grocer narrowly missed relegation in the June and September reviews and the demotion ends 14 years in the top flight.

Sir Ken has given his public backing to Mr Potts, who joined Morrisons in March. Mr Potts has taken the axe to managerial roles and hired an extra 5,000 shop staff.

The latest Kantar Worldpanel data shows that Sainsbury’s was the only winner out of the big four supermarkets in the 12 weeks to December 6.

It increased sales by 1.2 per cent and it looks well placed to do well over the all important Christmas trading period.

In stark contrast, Asda and market leader Tesco saw sales slide 3.4 per cent in the 12 weeks to December 6. Morrisons sales fell 2.0 per cent as it starts to feel the impact of selling 130 convenience stores. ​

​Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, said that Aldi and Lidl, which enjoyed sales growth of 15.4 per cent and 17.9 per cent respectively to retain their 10 per cent market share, are also likely to emerge as winners over the festive season.

Mr McKevitt said the pair are likely to lose their 10 per cent market share over Christmas as traditionally they see their market share decline over the festive period as people splash out at the big four.

“However people are not just going to Aldi and Lidl for the cheap stuff now,” said Mr McKevitt.

​“​While many shoppers may not head to Aldi and Lidl for their entire Christmas shop​,​ more and more are likely to pop in for trimmings ahead of the 25th, and each discounter should hope to attract a healthy 10 million shoppers over the Christmas period.​”

He said that Morrisons would probably be pleased that its figures were not worse, but warned that store closures and the sell-off of the convenience store estate will dent future sales figures.

​“Morrisons has hired some very well respected executives, but it’s going to be a really tough challenge,” he added.

Sainsbury’s grew sales across its convenience, supermarket and online businesses​,​ tapping into demand for premium goods such as champagne and sparkling wine​. The firm has been boosted by​ having more stores in the south east, where the economy is performing strongly.

Sir Ken Morrison, the outspoken ​former chairman of​ Morrisons​,​​ has bought a multi-million pound stake in rival Sainsbury’s.

​The news came to light on the day that Bradford-based Morrisons was relegated from the ​London Stock Exchange’s elite FTSE 100 index​ following falling sales, profits and market share.

​Sir Ken and his son William have acquired 4.7 million shares in Sainsbury’s, giving them a £12m stake in the firm.

Sainsbury’s is the only one of the big four supermarkets to be gaining market share while rivals Tesco, Asda and Morrisons lose shoppers to discounters Aldi and Lidl.

​Sir Ken holds 2.6 million shares worth £6m and has given Mike Coupe, the chief executive at Sainsbury’s​,​ his public backing.​ Sir Ken’s son William holds the remainder.​

Sir Ken purchased his stake around April last year​, before the appointment of David Potts as Morrisons’ new chief executive.

Speaking about the Sainsbury’s share purchase, Sir Ken said: “It is a well-run company​.”

Asked whether the share purchase was a sign of his approval for Mr Coupe’s strategy, Sir Ken said: “You interpret it how you want.”

Morrisons​, t​he UK’s fourth biggest grocer​,​ was replaced ​in the FTSE 100 yesterday ​by credit lender Provident​ ​Financial, which is also based in Bradford.

The grocer narrowly missed relegation in the June and September reviews and the demotion ends 14 years in the top flight.

Sir Ken has given his public backing to Mr Potts, who joined Morrisons in March. Mr Potts has taken the axe to managerial roles and hired an extra 5,000 shop staff.

The latest Kantar Worldpanel data shows that Sainsbury’s was the only winner out of the big four supermarkets in the 12 weeks to December 6.

It increased sales by 1.2 per cent and it looks well placed to do well over the all important Christmas trading period.

In stark contrast, Asda and market leader Tesco saw sales slide 3.4 per cent in the 12 weeks to December 6. Morrisons sales fell 2.0 per cent as it starts to feel the impact of selling 130 convenience stores. ​

​Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, said that Aldi and Lidl, which enjoyed sales growth of 15.4 per cent and 17.9 per cent respectively to retain their 10 per cent market share, are also likely to emerge as winners over the festive season.

Mr McKevitt said the pair are likely to lose their 10 per cent market share over Christmas as traditionally they see their market share decline over the festive period as people splash out at the big four.

“However people are not just going to Aldi and Lidl for the cheap stuff now,” said Mr McKevitt.

​“​While many shoppers may not head to Aldi and Lidl for their entire Christmas shop​,​ more and more are likely to pop in for trimmings ahead of the 25th, and each discounter should hope to attract a healthy 10 million shoppers over the Christmas period.​”

He said that Morrisons would probably be pleased that its figures were not worse, but warned that store closures and the sell-off of the convenience store estate will dent future sales figures.

​“Morrisons has hired some very well respected executives, but it’s going to be a really tough challenge,” he added.

Sainsbury’s grew sales across its convenience, supermarket and online businesses​,​ tapping into demand for premium goods such as champagne and sparkling wine​. The firm has been boosted by​ having more stores in the south east, where the economy is performing strongly.

ggSir Ken Morrison, the outspoken ​former chairman of​ Morrisons​,​​ has bought a multi-million pound stake in rival Sainsbury’s.

​The news came to light on the day that Bradford-based Morrisons was relegated from the ​London Stock Exchange’s elite FTSE 100 index​ following falling sales, profits and market share.

​Sir Ken and his son William have acquired 4.7 million shares in Sainsbury’s, giving them a £12m stake in the firm.

Sainsbury’s is the only one of the big four supermarkets to be gaining market share while rivals Tesco, Asda and Morrisons lose shoppers to discounters Aldi and Lidl.

​Sir Ken holds 2.6 million shares worth £6m and has given Mike Coupe, the chief executive at Sainsbury’s​,​ his public backing.​ Sir Ken’s son William holds the remainder.​

Sir Ken purchased his stake around April last year​, before the appointment of David Potts as Morrisons’ new chief executive.

Speaking about the Sainsbury’s share purchase, Sir Ken said: “It is a well-run company​.”

Asked whether the share purchase was a sign of his approval for Mr Coupe’s strategy, Sir Ken said: “You interpret it how you want.”

Morrisons​, t​he UK’s fourth biggest grocer​,​ was replaced ​in the FTSE 100 yesterday ​by credit lender Provident​ ​Financial, which is also based in Bradford.

The grocer narrowly missed relegation in the June and September reviews and the demotion ends 14 years in the top flight.

Sir Ken has given his public backing to Mr Potts, who joined Morrisons in March. Mr Potts has taken the axe to managerial roles and hired an extra 5,000 shop staff.

The latest Kantar Worldpanel data shows that Sainsbury’s was the only winner out of the big four supermarkets in the 12 weeks to December 6.

It increased sales by 1.2 per cent and it looks well placed to do well over the all important Christmas trading period.

In stark contrast, Asda and market leader Tesco saw sales slide 3.4 per cent in the 12 weeks to December 6. Morrisons sales fell 2.0 per cent as it starts to feel the impact of selling 130 convenience stores. ​

​Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar Worldpanel, said that Aldi and Lidl, which enjoyed sales growth of 15.4 per cent and 17.9 per cent respectively to retain their 10 per cent market share, are also likely to emerge as winners over the festive season.

Mr McKevitt said the pair are likely to lose their 10 per cent market share over Christmas as traditionally they see their market share decline over the festive period as people splash out at the big four.

“However people are not just going to Aldi and Lidl for the cheap stuff now,” said Mr McKevitt.

​“​While many shoppers may not head to Aldi and Lidl for their entire Christmas shop​,​ more and more are likely to pop in for trimmings ahead of the 25th, and each discounter should hope to attract a healthy 10 million shoppers over the Christmas period.​”

He said that Morrisons would probably be pleased that its figures were not worse, but warned that store closures and the sell-off of the convenience store estate will dent future sales figures.

​“Morrisons has hired some very well respected executives, but it’s going to be a really tough challenge,” he added.

Sainsbury’s grew sales across its convenience, supermarket and online businesses​,​ tapping into demand for premium goods such as champagne and sparkling wine​. The firm has been boosted by​ having more stores in the south east, where the economy is performing strongly.

Northern grocer Booths said is on track to deliver a Northern Christmas to virtually every county in Britain.

The firm said Christmas home delivery orders rose by 54 per cent nationwide and overall orders. Average order values rose 14 per cent with the overall average basket spend up significantly to £82.75 with home delivery average orders achieving a record £122.

Deliveries are scheduled across Britain from Cornwall to Inverness. Booths saw a sharp rise in demand for home delivery in London and the South of England. Home delivery orders were particularly strong in Scotland and the Northeast, where customers familiar with the Booths brand from holidaying in the Lakes have taken advantage of the delivery service.

CEO Chris Dee said: “The Northern secret is out. The rise in demand nationwide for a Booths Christmas is particularly gratifying, confirming that Booths is a trusted brand with significant appeal outside our region. Quality is core to the Booths offer, and we have the advantage and privilege to work with the best farmers and food producers in the country.”