Morrisons reports nearly £4bn in Q1 sales after largest quarterly rise in three years

By William Dodds

- Last updated on GMT

The retailer is in the process of making several improvements to its operations. Credit: Morrisons
The retailer is in the process of making several improvements to its operations. Credit: Morrisons

Related tags Supermarket

Supermarket chain Morrisons posted a 4.6% increase in like-for-like (LFL) sales during the 13 weeks from 30 October 2023 to 28 January 2024.

Total group sales, excluding fuel, were valued at £3.9bn for the quarter, which translates to a real-term rise of 3.9%.

The LFL rise of 4.6% is the largest increase in three years and compares favourably to the 0.1% rise seen during Q1 of 2022/23.

Morrisons has now experienced seven consecutive quarters of LFL sales improvement, despite the retailer suffering a £1.1bn pre-tax loss for the 52 weeks to 29 October 2023​.

Elsewhere, 910 former McColl’s stores have now been converted to the Morrisons Daily fascia.

Plans for change underway

Commenting on the results, Morrisons chief executive Rami Baitiéh said: “In January I outlined our plan to reinvigorate, refresh and strengthen Morrisons as we started our next chapter. Those plans are now in full swing with the whole business engaged in the three key pillars of work that will be the foundation of the future for Morrisons: commercial excellence, operations optimisation and new value creation.”

Baitiéh added that the business has now identified a series of areas where improvements can be made, including availability, waste, newness, innovation, speed and accuracy. The chief executive, who joined in November 2023, believes that customers are beginning to notice these efforts.

“Our key customer metrics are improving and complaints – which in many ways are the canaries in the retail coalmine – are down almost 60% in the last 20 weeks,” ​Baitiéh explained.

“For longer term and sustainable growth, we have developed new plans for growth in wholesale, convenience, franchise, export markets and global sourcing and we are now moving quickly to implement them.  In our franchise business, for example, we have built a new team specifically to accelerate new customer acquisition and recently we have opened, on average, three franchise convenience stores a week and we intend to open many more in the coming months.”

In other news, Food Manufacture takes a closer look at the new product development (NPD) process​, learning about the firms displaying best practice and why collaboration is so important.

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