Sainsbury's Weymouth

Sainsbury’s has seen a second consecutive quarter of falling LFL sales

Sainsbury’s has reported a 1.1% drop in first-quarter like-for-like sales – its second consecutive quarter of falling sales.

However, total sales, excluding fuel, rose 1% in the 12 weeks to 7 June.

Sainsbury’s said that during the quarter, clothing racked up double-digit like-for-like growth. Convenience sales grew by over 18% and groceries online by over 10%. Entertainment also saw “good growth”.

It opened 27 new c-stores and refurbished 12. It also opened one supermarket extension and refurbished three supermarkets.

Sainsbury’s last night retained The Grocer 33 Awards for both Customer Service and Availability. On the awards, CEO Justin King said: “Service levels in our stores remain industry leading.

“Strong availability throughout the day, combined with great in store standards and colleague engagement with our customers serves to highlight our differentiated offer. We are delighted that these high service levels have again been recognised, winning The Grocer 33 Customer Service and Availability Awards for the second year in a row.”

The trading update is the last for King, who steps down as CEO next month after 10 years at the helm.

“Throughout the quarter we have continued to invest in reducing prices and improving quality, increasing the value of our offer,” he said.

“Lower food-price inflation and reduced fuel prices are a welcome respite to customers’ finances but they continue to spend cautiously, leading to industry growth in the quarter being the slowest in a decade.

“We expect customer spending to remain cautious and we will continue to invest to keep our offer competitive to help customers balance their household budget. We remain confident that our clear strategy and differentiated offer will allow us to continue to outperform our supermarket peers through the remainder of the year,” King added.