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In the news this week… Retail Round-up

Including Aldi becoming the UK’s fifth largest grocer after market share boost.

The Source rounds up some of the key retail stories of the week.

Aldi has become the UK’s fifth largest grocer, according to the latest data from Kantar Worldpanel. The retailer grew sales by 12.4% in the 12 weeks to January 29, helping to boost its market share to 6.2%. This meant it overtook the Co-op for the first time. Meanwhile, Aldi’s discount rival, Lidl, was the second fastest growing chain during the period, with sales rising 9.4%.

Amazon is apparently on the look out for a bricks and mortar space in London for its Amazon Go store format. The etailer opened its first Go store in Seattle, US last year. It registered a UK trademark for Amazon Go stores in December and is now understood to be ramping up its efforts to find a central London space.

Latest figures from the BRC KPMG Retail Sales Monitor have shown that UK retail sales fell 0.6% on a like for like basis in January. Total sales inched up 0.1% year on year, following a 3.3% increase in the same period last year. Looking back across the last three months, the BRC said that retail sales registered the slowest growth of the festive period since 2009.

John Lewis saw its sales lift 5.4% to £74.4 million in the week to February 4. The home department saw the biggest overall performance, up 8.8%, while electricals and home technology grew by 7.2%. Fashion managed 1.6% growth overall, driven by a 7.2% rise in beauty sales and a 3.4% increase in womenswear.

Fashion chain New Look saw its UK like for like sales drop 4.7% in the 13 weeks ending December 24. Pre-tax profit also took a hit during the quarter – down 37.6% to £30.1 million. Sales edged up 0.8% to £422.6 million year on year, while sales through the retailer’s e-commerce platform rose 18.2% over the period.

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