Sainsbury’s will launch its Brand Match voucher scheme nationwide on Wednesday.
The scheme, revealed by The Grocer in June, has been on trial in the supermarket’s 12 Northern Irish stores.
The move, confirmed over the weekend, comes just days after Sainsbury’s chief executive Justin King told journalists at the retailer’s second-quarter trading update that he had no plans to roll out Brand Match.
“We will roll out Brand Match as and when we understand it properly,” he said. “It’s a tool we might use but that’s not for now.”
King said the scheme had resulted in “great learning”, helping Sainsbury’s gauge its competitiveness on price against Tesco. “We had more baskets won against Tesco than the week before,” he added.
Managers were told of the rollout on Thursday, with other staff informed a day later.
“The launch of Brand Match across the UK represents a revolution in retail and is fantastic news for hard-pressed shoppers,” said commercial director Mike Coupe.
However, some analysts raised doubts over the scheme.
“We are concerned the scheme mechanic risks emphasising higher prices,” said Nick Coulter from Nomura. “Competitors may also consider accepting Sainsbury’s vouchers.”
Suppliers fear the worst but are Tesco's cuts a drop in the ocean? (analysis; 1 October 2011)
New Sainsbury’s slogan tells shoppers to Live Well For Less (15 September 2011)