City Talk: Sainsbury's relaunch

Sainsbury's surprised dealers by relaunching its upmarket Taste the Difference food range, which accounts for 1bn-worth of sales. Sainsbury's has reacted to the increasing trend in the UK for eating in and is looking to take market share from Marks & Spencer and Waitrose.

The reform of the range will consist of an additional 150 lines to create the biggest new product launch in Sainsbury's history. The relaunch will see the range enlarged to 1,141 products, including the bistro line of 'restaurant quality food'. The latter is made up of 23 brands, specifically designed for customers who are eating out less to cash in on the eating at home boom.

A major media campaign, fronted by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, has been launched.

Asda brings in 500 lines

Asda has just announced that it is comprehensively restructuring its mid-priced food line, which, management reckons, is "invisible", sandwiched as it is between the Smart Price budget range and the Extra Special range

Not to be outdone by Sainsbury's, Asda is spending 100m to introduce 500 new products, reformulating 1,000 and repackaging the remaining 2,500 products in the range. Asda is calling the latter the 'Chosen By You' range. City analysts have said this restructuring should have been made two years ago, and this might have stemmed the outflow of customers.

Tesco focuses on China

Tesco is convinced it has discovered a winning formula for invading the Chinese market, with a plan to open 80 malls by 2015.

Dealers reckon Tesco is pioneering a leading position in China by establishing itself in mid-sized cities on China's eastern seaboard as against its main UK competitors, which have stayed in Shanghai. Twenty years ago, Tesco pioneered out-of-town stores with ample parking in the UK leaving rivals such as Sainsbury's and Asda in hard-to-access city centre sites. This move laid the foundations for Tesco climbing to the number one spot in the UK among British supermarket groups. This was aided by its Clubcard, which provided invaluable guidance on shoppers' behavioural patterns.

Domino's Pizza rival in UK

Papa John's, the US pizza giant, is planning to have between 400 and 500 pizza restaurants in the UK within five years.

It has just opened a new dough factory in Milton Keynes, where Domino's is based. Papa John's has some 120 shops at present, with 60 in London. Domino's has 627 UK stores.

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