Sainsbury’s profits slip as it reveals cost of ‘keeping prices low’ for customers


By guest author Georgia Wright from the Retail Gazette

April 27, 2023


Caption courtesy by the Retail Gazette


·       Sainsbury’s posts a fall in its pre-tax profit, as it invests in “better value” for customers

·       The supermarket saw underlying profit before tax of GBP 690 million

Sainsbury’s has posted a fall in its pre-tax profit, after revealing it has spent more than GBP 560 million on “keeping our prices low over the last two years”.

Britain’s second-largest supermarket said that in the year ending 4 March, its group revenue was up 5.3 % to GBP 31.491billion, but profit before tax was GBP 327 million – down from GBP 854 million at the same time last year.

The group, which has a 15 % share of Britain’s grocery market, said underlying pretax profit was GBP 690 million in the year to March 4, at the top end of guidance but down from the GBP 730 million made in 2021-22.

For the 2023-24 year, it forecast profit between GBP 640 and GBP 700 million, ahead of analysts’ average forecast of GBP 631 million.

Sainsbury’s said the outlook for consumer spending remained uncertain but it had started the new financial year “with great momentum”.

Chief executive Simon Roberts said: “We really get how tough life is for so many households right now which is why we are absolutely determined to battle inflation for our customers. Our focus on value has never been greater and we have spent over GBP 560 million keeping our prices low over the last two years. As a result, we are now the best value compared to our competitors that we have been in many years and we are delivering improved market share performance in Sainsbury’s and Argos.

“We are two years into our plan to put food back at the heart of Sainsbury’s and have focused our efforts on reducing costs right across the business, which has enabled us to make the right decisions for our colleagues and customers.

“Our colleagues do a fantastic job serving our customers every day and we know that they are also dealing with the impact of the rising cost of living. That’s why, over the last 12 months, we took the decision to invest GBP 225 million in supporting colleagues including raising colleague pay three times, becoming the first major supermarket to pay our people the Living Wage across the whole country and providing free food at work and increased colleague discount.”