Convenience store chain Spar has reported total sales from December 14 to date up 10.3%.

Spar UK managing director Jerry Marwood said the figures show investment in stores has helped boost performance. “We have worked very hard to try and keep stores vibrant, fresh and innovative, as well as offering great promotions and discounts on key products,” he said.

Spar reported like-for-like sales up 6.4% from May to November but Marwood added our “results over the last few weeks have pushed us further ahead – which is very encouraging”.

He said the collapse of Threshers owner First Quench “also had a beneficial impact on our volumes”. He added: “Since their closure our alcohol sales have increased by 6%. Our recent review of the Spar brand wine range and the launch of some great exclusive brands in late autumn have certainly positioned us well to make the most of things.”

Marwood said market conditions would be tough in 2010 but he is optimistic for Spar. “We are facing the marketplace with ambition and confidence. There is plenty of evidence to suggest that the trends which have driven more customers into our business in 2009 will continue well into 2010, and consequently we will come out in a stronger position.”