Tesco continues to shed market share as Asda hits record high

Elizabeth Fournier
TESCO has continued to shed market share in the first three months of 2012, latest figures showed yesterday, while number two supermarket Asda has seen its slice of the pie jump to a record high.

According to Kantar data released yesterday, Tesco’s year-on-year growth lagged behind the rest of the sector at just 2.7 per cent in the 12 weeks to 18 March.

Over the same period, sales at Asda grew 7.8 per cent to boost its total market share to 17.9 per cent – after the incorporation of the portfolio of Netto stores the company bought last year.

Though Tesco’s market share recovered slightly from the seven-year low it recorded last month, its 30.2 per cent share is still down 0.4 percentage points from this time last year.

It follows a tricky period for the UK’s biggest retailer, which has seen it issue its first ever profit warning during January and its top UK executive Richard Brasher step down from the company.

At both the top and budget ends of the market, growth continued at a good clip, with sales at Waitrose up 4.4 per cent compared to 2011, while cut price rivals Aldi and Lidl grew by 28.5 per cent and 10.7 per cent respectively.

There was also good news for new Iceland owner Malcolm Walker and his consortium of backers, who took control at the business earlier this month.

Strong frozen food sales across the sector contributed to growth of 10 per cent at its stores, and a slight boost in market share to two per cent.