Morrisons to take on Tesco and Sainsburys with convenience stores

Heady times at Morrisons under new chief executive officer Dalton Philips. Not only has the chain produced an excellent set of figures but it’s planning to take on the big boys by launching a chain of convenience stores and maybe getting into internet groceries.

The group is reporting a sales rise of 9.1 per cent to £8.1 billion for the first half year, with pre-tax profit rising 14 per cent to £410 million.

Buoyed by these figures, the chain says it will trial smaller format convenience stores next year, thus getting into an area where big beasts Tesco and Sainsburys have over the years developed both experience and dominance. That will undoubtedly be a tough nut to crack.

As if that weren’t enough, Morrisons is to assess the potential of internet retailing, again a difficult area where the big players have built a big presence and Ocado, despite healthy sales growth, has yet to make a profit.

Maybe the group would be better off focusing a little more closely on its like-for-like sales, which grew by a measly 0.9 per cent in the first half of 2010.

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About David O'Reilly

David is a former deputy editor of Campaign and writer for a number of leading titles including Management Today and the Sunday Times. He is a partner in The Editorial Partnership.