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Shoprite first-half sales rise 14%

| Retailer trading results

By Andries Mahlangu - BusinessLive

Africa’s biggest grocery retailer Shoprite reported robust growth in sales in the six months ended December, with all its various store formats coming to the party save for its furniture business. 

Its total merchandise sales rose 14% to a R121bn year on year, boosted in part by “record” Black Friday sales and the festive period. On a like-for-like basis, sales rose 6.3%

The current sales momentum was despite the high base of the previous comparable period when sales rose 17.5%. 

In a trading update on Tuesday, Shoprite said its core SA grocery business extended its market share gains to 58 months. 

Shoprite remains dominant in the lower-income markets through Shoprite and Usave brands, but its Checkers brand has also been attracting spending from middle-to-high end consumers by leveraging its Sixty60 delivery service to gain more customers. 

Shoprite and Usave reported sales growth of 13% during the reporting period. Those of Checkers and Checkers Hyper rose 13.7%, boosted by Sixty60 online sales that surged 63.1%. 

LiquorShop sales rose 25.2% while the furniture segment, made up of OK Furniture and House & Home, reported an increase in sales of just 1.7% and 0.7% on a same-store basis. 

Supermarket sales outside SA rose a hefty 20% on a currency-neutral basis. 

Shoprite incurred R500m in diesel expense to operate generators across its SA supermarket business during the reporting period.

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