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Sainsbury's Q1 sales slide following the phasing out of multi-buy deals

Published:  08 June, 2016

Sainsbury's saw sales for the first quarter slide with like-for-like retail sales down 0.8% for the 12 weeks ending 4 June 2016.

Sainsbury's saw sales for the first quarter slide with like-for-like retail sales down 0.8%, the 12 weeks ending 4 June 2016.

"Market conditions remain challenging. Food price deflation continues to impact our sales and pressures on pricing mean the market will remain competitive for the foreseeable future," said Mike Coupe, chief executive officer of Sainsbury's.

The previous quater's financial results posted the retailer's first quarter growth in sales in two years. However, the down turn in sales could be a reflection of Sainsbury's announcing that it would be phasing out the use of multi-buy deals.

According to Edward Garner, communications director at Kantar Worldpanel the drop in sales "has been driven by a decline in pack sales, which is the short-term result of shifting its promotional emphasis from multi-pack deals to straightforward price cuts."

All multi-buy deals will be eliminated by August 2016.

Helping to boost figures was an increase convenience channel growth, which saw an increase of 6% and the retailer opened seven new convenience shops during the quarter.

Groceries sales online were also up, increasing 8% and orders online increased 13% for the period. The company launched a Sainsbury's app during Q1  as well in a effort to further grow online sales.

The company has faced a number of tough challenges in recent weeks according to Connor Campbell, a senior market analyst at, indicating that the results although down are an improvement.

"Having had such a traumatic time of it in the past 6 weeks, a period which saw its stock plunge from £2.88 to £2.46 on the back of weak full year figures, news of a CMA investigation into the Home Retail Group acquisition and its worst drop in sales for over a year according to Kantar Worldpanel, Sainsbury's bounced back this Wednesday with its Q1 results. Rising over 2.5% Sainsbury's saw like-for-like sales fall 0.8% for the 12 weeks to June, better than the 1.2% slide seen in the 12 weeks to May 22nd, alongside a 0.3% jump in total group sales," he said.