John Lewis reports 9.3% rise in Xmas sales

Department store chain John Lewis has reported total sales of £596m for the five weeks to December 31, a 9.3 percent increase on last year.

Like-for-like sales saw a growth of 6.2 percent over the period compared to 2010.

Fashion, including beauty, was 10.3 percent up, whilst Home increased by 13.6 percent.

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Online sales for the five weeks were 27.9 percent up on last year and have now exceeded £600m for the year to date.

The fourth week of the period (Sunday 18 December to Saturday 24 December inclusive) was particularly strong, seeing sales of £124.7m, up 32.7 percent on 2010 sales for the equivalent week.

John Lewis managing director Andy Street said: “Sales during the four weeks to Christmas Eve were outstanding. During that period, we broke the record for our biggest week ever with a sterling total of £133.1m for the week ending 17 December. The first week of Clearance saw a very strong start, but against the pre-VAT increase week in 2010, it was always going to be a challenge to match sales, particularly with ‘big ticket’ items.

“The strength of our online operation was very much in evidence during this key five week period, confirming our strength as a pre-eminent multi-channel retailer. Sales at broke through the £600m milestone during December and our Click and Collect operation, giving customers the flexibility of buying online and collecting from 129 John Lewis and Waitrose branches, continued operating right up to Christmas Eve in John Lewis and saw a 90 per cent increase in usage.

"Although trade in 2012 will undoubtedly be challenging and economic conditions volatile, John Lewis will continue to be the trusted retailer of choice for our customers and will always fulfill its ‘Never Knowingly Undersold’ promise.”



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