Review of performance (continued)
(Photo of Mark Price, Managing Director, Waitrose)
In a challenging market Waitrose grew gross sales by 9.0% to over £4.5bn for the first time, and on a 52 week basis sales were 11.1% higher. Like-for-like sales grew 3.6%, excluding petrol, on a 52 week basis.
Sales density rose by 1.5% to £1,066 per square foot. Our sales productivity per selling FTE increased to £222,500, up by £11,000 (5.2%) on last year.
It was a year of significant investment and innovation across Waitrose, with the shops and the brand becoming more accessible to many shoppers. Essential Waitrose continues to grow strongly and is on track to generate sales of £0.75bn in the coming year. We launched Seriously, our indulgent desserts range, and Menu From, our restaurant-quality ready meals, in addition to agreeing a contract to develop the Duchy Originals brand. These initiatives have helped contribute to an additional 400,000 shoppers per week visiting Waitrose stores.
(Continued on page 15...)
(Photo captioned: Customer service remains key to Waitrose in a year of significant investment and innovation)
(Graph of Waitrose Gross sales and operating margin performance (£m)(1))
(Graph of Waitrose Gross sales per square foot (selling space) (£))
(Graph of Waitrose Gross sales per selling FTE (£000))
(1) see note (1) on page 13