Sainsbury (J) PLC SBRY
Q1 2014 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 06/12/2013

Operator: Good morning, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the J. Sainsbury Analyst Call hosted by Justin King. My name is Sue and I'm your event manager. During the presentation, your lines will remain on listen-only. I would like to advise all parties that this conference is being recorded for replay purposes.

Now, Iā€™d like to hand over to Justin. Thank you.

Justin King - CEO: Good morning, everyone. Thanks for coming on the line. I'm joined by Mike Coupe and John Rogers. As you all know, this is our first quarter trading statements for the 12 weeks finished last Saturday, the 8th of June.

As you will have seen, we delivered a solid sales performance to start the year in what remains a challenging market. Our total sales up 3.6%, or 3.3% excluding fuel, and our like-for-like sales up 0.7%, or 0.8% excluding fuel. A strong contribution there from new space as you'll see, and the underlying performance reflecting challenging comparatives, particularly of course, the Jubilee last year.

Our market share continues to grow. Latest market data showing it up 0.2% to 16.8%, and we remain the only one of the big five grocery retailers to be growing market share. Underpinning that performance is the great service and availability in our stores; you will have seen last night that the Grocer Awards, we won both the customer service and availability awards over the last year, a great testimony there to the fantastic job being done by our 156,000 colleagues.

Of particular note, in the quarter performance of our own label ranges by Sainsbury's, the relaunch now complete, up 7% and Taste the Difference up 10%, driving our own label penetration to a recent times high.

In a separate announcement today, we update on our 20x20 Sustainability Plans. I encourage you to read through that announcement to see the progress that we are making; a couple of highlights we have drawn attention to today. The joint investment we've made with our supplier Dunbia in Wales, securing around 600 rural jobs, but also supporting the Sainsbury's Lamb Development Group, primarily Welsh farmers, who provide almost all of our new season lamb.

We also reached an important milestone part of our Paralympic legacy, our 2,000 disabled colleague employed through our partnership with Remploy.

Looking at other legs of our growth strategy, a general merchandise, which continues to be focused on being complementary to our food offer, growing at twice the rate of food and particularly noting, homeware, with kitchen electricals up 34%, cookware up 23%, reflecting the fact that that offer being complementary to the weekly food shop showing market contrasting growth.

Convenience driven by a good underlying like-for-like, plus 19 new stores, up 20% year-on-year in the quarter, and online continuing to grow in the mid-teens just in excess of 16% in the quarter.

As I've already mentioned, 19 new convenience stores and 13 refurbished. Of course, our first convenience store celebrated its 15th birthday in the quarter, so some of our older stores requiring refurbishment and one new supermarket with six refurbished, bringing our total new space in the quarter to 82,000 square feet. You'll note reduced level of extensions now contributing just 0.2% to our growth figure.

Read our Earnings Call Transcript disclaimer.
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