Sales up at John Lewis and Waitrose despite ‘challenging’ High Street

PUBLISHED: 08:53 14 September 2011 | UPDATED: 09:12 14 September 2011

John Lewis

John Lewis

Archant

A RETAIL and supermarket giant has recorded increased sales in its half year results, despite the difficult financial climate.

The John Lewis Partnership, which owns both the John Lewis department store and Waitrose supermarket in WGC, recorded gross sales of £244m for the year up to July 30, a rise of 6.4 per cent.

Like for like sales at Waitrose were up by four per cent, and John Lewis up one per cent.

But having invested almost £254m into new branches, formats and concepts – including a £1m revamp of the menswear department at John Lewis in WGC – the company’s profits were down by £20m, to £90.4m.

John Lewis Partnership chairman Charlie Mayfield said high street trading was still “extremely challenging”, but remained confident the company’s investment strategy would ultimately pay off.

“The Partnership has made good progress in the first half,” he said.

“Sales grew strongly although, as expected, profits were lower than in the same period in 2010 as we accelerated investment in our future growth plans, even though conditions remained extremely challenging.

“Trading conditions are set to remain challenging through the rest of this year and into 2012.

“We are not simply waiting for the recovery, but instead we have increased the pace of investment and innovation across the Partnership, putting us in the best possible position to seize the opportunity created by a rapidly changing retail environment.

“Our momentum is strong and I am confident we will build on that in the second half.”


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