SuperValu was the biggest winner in terms of Christmas sales, according to the supermarket share figures from Kantar Worldpanel, for the 12 weeks ending January 5, 2014.
Commercial director of KantarWorldpanel, David Berry says that Christmas was a bumper season for SuperValu as it attracted 43,000 more households to shop in its stores over the festive season. "This helped the retailer post market-beating sales growth of 1.3% and edged its market share above 20% for the first time since October 2009," he said "Alcoholic drinks are an important part of the Christmas shop and SuperValu has grown its take home sales by 10% in this category, which has helped it perform ahead of the market.”
Commenting on the results, Martin Kelleher, managing director, SuperValu said, “SuperValu has grown by 30% over the last 10 years, with over two million transactions per week and achieves annual retail sales of just over €2 billion.”
He added that the momentum behind the SuperValu brand underlines why they are changing the Superquinn name and making the 24 stores part of the SuperValu family. Bringing both together will create an unrivalled Irish retail brand and will boast a network of 224 stores, with a SuperValu in every county in Ireland.”
However, SuperValu's recently-aquired Superquinn stores posted a disappointing festive sales period, with a -6.4% drop in sales. Berry told Retail Intelligence that while Superquinn has been on the slide for a number of years, it still remains one of Ireland's top retailers. He doesn’t believe the upcoming merge with SuperValu has affected the brand negatively and that it remains to be seen how the stores will do once the merge is complete.
Meanwhile, the discounters Aldi and Lidl also enjoyed a boost with both enjoying double-digit growth in the final 12 weeks of the year. The December voucher campaigns of both in the Sunday newspapers looks to have had a positive impact, with the value of the average shop growing by more than €2 in each store. Aldi grew its sales from 5.9% to 7.1% when compared to the same time period last year in the 12 weeks to January 6, 2013. Lidl also increased its sales in the same period, from 5.7% last year, to 6.4% this year.
The Christmas veg promotions undertaken by both may have part of the reason behind the increase in sales. Berry told Retail Intelligence that while the veg promotions were viewed negatively by some shoppers, the data speaks for itself. “While there were some people saying that they thought it was a negative campaign for the farmers, their actions are proving different- as you can see the discounters did very well this period, which in part is due to the veg promotions this Christmas.”
Elsewhere, Tesco still holds the largest market share of all the retailers, although its sales were shown to decline by -6.2%. Berry said, “Tesco still maintains a clear lead at the top, however it has lost ground, with its market share falling from 27.8% last year to 26.2% now. However, the sales decline is beginning to show signs of slowing, which is welcome news.” Dunnes’ sales also dropped by 0.9% compared with last year, resulting in a slight dip in market share to 23.9%, following four months of positive sales growth for the retailer.
Berry told Retail Intelligence that Dunnes and Tesco shoppers appear to move back and forth from the two retailers. "With Dunnes and Tesco theres quite a strong overlap between the two, so almost when Dunnes performs very well, that has an impact on Tesco. And when Tesco starts to improve, you see Dunnes decline. So it's that, combined with the continuing success of Aldi and Lidl, who continue to have an impact on the other players in the market - as they are performing so strongly."
Price inflation has dropped from 3.4% last month to 2.9%, helped by the pre-Christmas ‘vegetable wars’ seen in a number of retailers. The price of vegetables dropped considerably, with shoppers buying 4% more compared with last Christmas, despite spending 10% less.
*Grocery inflation stands at 2.9%* for the 12 week period ending 5 January 2014, down from the 3.4% seen last period.
© 2013 - Checkout Magazine by Genna Patterson