Asda reports 2012 sales rise
Britain’s second-biggest online retailer has announced 2012 sales of £22.8bn, an increase of 4.5% on the previous year.
Asda, which is owned by the US supermarket chain Walmart, has also revealed plans to invest further in its UK operations and said current success lay with saving customers money.
The chain has said it will further build on its 2012 success, adding that it would be pumping £700m of capital this year into online, new and existing stores as well as its supply chain.
As a result, 2,500 jobs will be created across the UK and the company also explained that, while building stores is central to growth, it had shifted focus to “accelerate its multichannel business”.
Meanwhile Asda CEO and president Andy Clarke explained that he was “proud” the company had increased sales in such a challenging trading environment.
“By focusing on their needs through accelerating our investment in the technology and infrastructure to make shopping more convenient, customers can shop for what they want, when they want it,” he said.
Asda’s online grocery business has seen double-digit growth year on year, driven by consumers’ turn to online shopping, it said. In response to this, Asda added to its home shopping capacity and opened its third purpose-built picking centre in Nottingham last month.
The new picking centre has been described as a “store without customers” and has provided 600 jobs in the area. It has a team of in-store bakers and offers extended delivery slots between 6am and 11pm, as well as access to more than 25,000 items.
Investment into the company’s Click and Collect facilities will see Asda bring the service to more than 200 outlets by the end of 2013. According to Asda, the Click and Collect function has “outperformed expectations” and the new format accounts for 4% of all grocery home shopping orders since autumn last year.
In the last part of this year Asda, which employs more than 175,000 people at 568 sites in the UK, has said it will open 10 new stores, which will include four new small-format supermarkets, five superstores and one new non-food outlet.
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