Sales growth boost for Sainsbury’s

Sainsbury’s hailed a solid sales performance in a challenging environment today as it benefited from Easter, the royal wedding and record-breaking weather.

The UK’s third biggest supermarket recorded 1.9 per cent sales growth excluding fuel and the impact of new stores but including VAT in the 12 weeks to June 11. Tesco yesterday reported an equivalent figure of one per cent growth.

The company said general merchandise and clothing grew faster than food - an area in which Tesco is struggling - as it had its best quarter ever for childrenswear and became the number one retailer for the DVD of Oscar-winner The King’s Speech.

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The royal wedding saw the supermarket sell nearly 300 miles of bunting, 159,000 flags and 49,000 mugs, while it also sold the most champagne ever recorded outside Christmas.

Sainsbury’s focus on rapid expansion and general merchandise - or non-food sales - has paid off over the last year as it frequently delivered stronger like-for-like growth than its rivals.

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