Sales edged up 0.7% at Nisa between April and December last year.

The retail symbol and buying group also said its like-for-like sales rose by 6.7% during December, with volumes up 9.7%.

During December, sales of confectionery increased 16.7% by value and licensed sales by 4.7%.

Its symbol group stores also performed strongly, with total sales up 14.4% between October and December, boosted by a new TV advertising campaign and the rollout of a fresh product trial.

Nisa also recruited 190 members between April and December, a 7.9% increase on record figures the year before.

“The current trading environment is proving difficult for the retail market therefore Nisa is pleased to announce an increase in sales and strong recruitment figures for the 39 weeks until December 2012,” said FD Simon Webster.

“This is testament to the strength of Nisa members and the service we offer.”