Waitrose sales have soared in the run-up to Easter but sister retailer John Lewis has failed to keep pace.
Sales at the upmarket grocer rose 14.7% in the week to April 1 to £130.9m. In the first nine weeks they fell 0.3%.
Waitrose benefitted from the late fall of Easter this year and an extra day of trade.
IT director Mike Sackman said: “Much of the country enjoyed some sunshine at the weekend, prompting strong sales of our gardening ranges and ice creams. We also launched the first of the season’s British raspberries in to our shops last week, which are extra sweet following recent sun levels.”
At sister retailer John Lewis, sales were down 6% to £78.3m in that week while over the nine weeks sales fell 0.2%. The department store said that the lack of bank holiday trade affected its sales.
Fashion sales were up 3%, driven by women’s wear, up 5.3%. The retailer’s new And/Or denim brand helped women’s casual wear achieve the biggest uplift in the category.
Home was down 3.7% although home accessories and gits rose 12.4%. Outdoor living sales rocketed 52%.
Electricals and home technology sales fell 15.6%. John Lewis attributed this to “strong promotional activity in the comparable week last year”.
Overall, the partnership racked up a 6% improvement in sales to £209.2m in the week to April 1. In the nine weeks, sales fell 0.3%.