Safeway marketing push increases profits
LONDON - Supermarket chain Safeway has seen its strategy of axing national advertising in favour of local work and marketing pay off, as it reported double-digit growth in the first half.
Posting its first-half results today, the company said that fully reformatted Safeway stores, including superstores, supermarkets and convenience stores, had seen growth of 13% over the period ending October 13. The overall like-for-like sales growth figure was 5.7%.
Safeway said it had been helped by its store refits and the launch of new product ranges.
The retailer has been undertaking a programme of store refits throughout the country. It has also refocused its product lines on fresh, ready-prepared meals. In December, it opens its first hyperstore in Plymouth, and it is also branching into non-food areas such as dry-cleaning and photo-processing.
Safeway reported an 8% increase in profits before property and tax to £180m. However, analyst forecasts had gone as high as £194m and Safeway shares were trading down 4.3% at 330p today, after rises earlier in the week.
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