Sainsbury’s has unveiled a leap in interim profits and said that non-food sales - which include fashion - are growing at two and a half times the rate of food sales.
Sainsbury’s recorded an 18.5% increase in underlying pre-tax profits to £307m in the 28 weeks to October 3, when turnover rose 3.7% to £11.16bn. Like-for-likes, excluding fuel, climbed 5.7%.
Sainsbury’s chief executive Justin King said that the number of weekly transactions by customers now stands at 18.5m, up by 800,000 on last year, and that the supermarket is well placed following its £432m fundraising in June to speed up growth plans.
Sainsbury’s said in the interim announcement there is “significant” potential to grow the non-food business and reported a record back-to-school season, with quality improved across the range, and prices lower than last year.
Sainsbury’s said that around 20% of the UK population are within a 15 minute drive of a Sainsbury’s non-food offer. This is set to double to 40% over the next five years as the company accelerates expansion plans.
During the first half, Sainsbury’s TU clothing brand recorded one million transactions in one week for the first time since its launch five years ago.