Takeover target Morrisons saw recent sales lower than last year, but much higher than pre-Covid levels

·1 min read
Morrisons is led by David Potts (Mikael Buck / Morrisons / The Ac)
Morrisons is led by David Potts (Mikael Buck / Morrisons / The Ac)

Takeover target Morrisons has seen recent shopper spend fall from a year earlier when customers went on bumper buying sprees at the start of the pandemic, but the figure is still much higher than pre-Covid.

Data from market research firm Kantar shows some of the features that might make the grocery chain look attractive to private equity group Clayton, Dubilier & Rice.

The suitor recently proposed a 230p per share offer which has been rejected.

In the 12 weeks to June 13 £3.1 billion was spent at Morrisons. That is down 1.5% year on year, but 8.9% higher than the same period in 2019.

The grocer’s market share was flat at 10.1%. Rivals Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda all recorded improved market share versus the same time last year.

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar, said: “In July last year it [Morrisons] shrugged off several years of underperformance, and since then it has grown faster than the market each month until this one.”

The research was part of a wider report that showed shoppers are returning to more normal habits, with more regular trips and smaller basket sizes.

Looking at take-home grocery data, total supermarket sales fell by 1.6% during the 12 weeks to June 13.

Supermarket footfall in the latest four weeks was down by five million trips compared with May.

The re-opening of indoor hospitality saw some would-be spend in stores directed to bars and restaurants.

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