Justin King

The big news in the paper retail-wise this morning is that Sainsbury’s is planning to out all multi-buy promotions by the summer, as reported by The Grocer yesterday.

The Guardian writes the supermarkets is axing two-for-one offers amid consumer spending concerns after research showed special offers seduced shoppers to spend £1,200 more a year than planned. Sainsbury’s will instead concentrate on lower everyday prices. The Independent said the supermarket had been working on removing multi-buy promotions since March last year, with the move hoped to play a part in stopping customers bulk-buying junk food and also to lower food waste. The Times notes other supermarkets such as Tesco and Asda were also phasing out promotions to win back customers, with Asda removing 133 multi-buy offers this week alone. The Telegraph quotes Bernstein analyst Bruno Monteyne, who said the decision by supermarkets was likely to be a response to the work the CMA is doing. “The prospect of some of these deals being banned will allow them all to withdraw from these practices at the same time. Constantly updating deals is actually very complex to administer, so ceasing to offer multi-buy deals is actually likely to be a relief for the industry.”

Former Sainsbury’s boss Justin King has offered his thoughts to The Guardian on the building tax row as criticism grows over how much tax big multinationals pay. King said it was unfair that traditional retailers must pay huge rates bills for services such as roads and waste collection while their online rivals paid little but received the same benefits. But King added business rates were a bigger problem for British retailers than the corporation tax scandal. “Business rates are by far the most significant imbalance in the tax system,” he said.

Elsewhere, The Times reports on the latest trading update for Dairy Crest, which saw sales of its main brands stay broadly flat in the third quarter, with volumes edging up 2%.

Tate & Lyle said weaker currencies would lower its reported full-year profits to “modestly below” last year’s results (The Financial Times). Its share price tanked more than 7% as a result.

Tobacco giant Imperial Brands blamed conflicts in Iraq and Syria for declining tobacco sales in its first quarter (The FT). The group said that withdrawing from Syria and further disruption to supplies in Iraq accounted for nearly half the 9.1% fall in volumes in the quarter (The Independent).