Online and c-stores boost Sainsbury's profits

Sainsbury’s has announced a rise in pre-tax profits of 2.5% during the six months to 29 September.

According to the supermarket chain’s interim results, pre-tax profits have risen to £405m during the six month period.

Like-for-like (LFL) sales were up 1.7% and the company’s market share grew by 16.7%, which is the largest the supermarket chain has seen in almost a decade.

The company said strong growth in online business and its convenience stores have helped to boost returns.

Analysts said the positive performance bucked the trend among Sainsbury's competitors. Last week Morrisons reported a 2.1% drop in LFL sales for trade in the three months to 30 October.

Sainsbury’s chairman David Tyler said: “Sainsbury’s has made a strong start to the year, delivering continued outperformance in what has remained a challenging market. We have grown our underlying basic earnings per share to 15.2p, return on capital employed remains unchanged at 10.9% and our interim dividend is 4.8p per share, up 6.7%.”

Chief executive Justin King added: “Our share of the grocery market is the highest for almost a decade at 16.7%, with 31 consecutive quarters of LFL sales growth. We continue to succeed by remaining focused on delivering quality products, best-in-class service and value for our customers, without compromise. Brand Match, Nectar and our highly targeted coupon-at-till all reinforce our price competiveness.”

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