Tesco under pressure from rivals as market share falls
Tesco now competing on 'smaller middle ground' as Waitrose and Aldi tighten squeeze
TESCO is feeling the squeeze from both ends of the market as its rival retailers increase their share of business.
Although Tesco remains Britain's biggest supermarket, its market share shrank to 30.2 per cent in the 12 weeks to 16 September, from 30.9 per cent a year earlier, The Times reports.
During the same period Sainsbury's, Britain's third-biggest supermarket, increased its share from 16.4 per cent to 16.6 per cent.
Edward Garner, director at Kantar Worldpanel, which compiled the data, said Tesco, Sainsbury's and the others in Britain's "Big Four" – Morrisons and Asda – are now being forced to "compete for an ever-smaller middle ground".
Waitrose, a division of the John Lewis Partnership, continues to make significant gains at the top end of the market, increasing its share during the period from 2.9 per cent to 3.7 per cent, while discount stores Aldi and Lidl have upped their share of the lower end. Aldi's share rose from 2.9 per cent to 3.7 per cent, while Lidl was up from 2.8 per cent to 3 per cent.
"Strong performances by retailers at both ends of the market pose a significant challenge for the big four supermarkets," Garner explained.
Philip Clarke, Tesco's chief executive, will update investors on the company's results next Wednesday. Clarke is currently in the process of a £1 billion turnaround of the supermarket's British business. Tesco is retreating from foreign markets to focus on the UK and this week released its own-brand tablet device, the Hudl, hoping to regain some of the profits lost to Amazon and Apple from books and DVDs. ·