100 year challenge – How Tesco has started it’s century celebrations

Tesco have slashed their big brand prices to mark the 100th anniversary of its launch in 1919 as a market stall in London. The celebrations began last year with the launch of the first Jack’s store taking the brand back to its roots.

“Jack Cohen championed value for customers and changed the face of British shopping. He’s an inspiration for all of us and that same spirit still drives Tesco now. It’s fitting that today, we mark the beginning of Tesco’s celebration of 100 Years of Great Value by launching a new brand, and stores bearing his name: Jack’s. Great tasting food at the lowest possible prices with 8 out of 10 products grown, reared or made in Britain.” – Dave Lewis, Tesco Group Chief Executive.

After a tough year Tesco was able to start the 100-year celebration with Christmas YOY sales of +2.2%. This meant they won the supermarket war and it was a personal best for them in a decade.

According to data from Kantar Worldpanel, supermarkets posted record sales of £29.3bn during the 12 weeks leading up to Christmas, totalling an extra £450 million compared with the same period in 2017. Saturday 22 December proved to be the busiest shopping day of the year: more than half of all households visited a supermarket in a last-minute Christmas dash. Households racked up an average bill of £383 on their December food shops.

Chief executive Dave Lewis boasts great success during his reign as shares have risen by 7% over the last year and are up by 55% from their 2015 lows. Also, Tesco’s headline operating profit rose by 28.4% last year and analysts’ forecasts suggest this will be maintained in 2018/19 and 2019/20. Adjusted earnings per share are expected to rise by 17% during the current year, which ends on 24 February, and by 20% in 2019/20.

However, this week Lewis, who earned the nickname ‘Drastic Dave’ as he cut costs at Unilever, is expected to axe supermarket jobs in order to cut costs. The job losses would affect store managers, and it’s understood that the supermarket have started consulting with the affected colleagues. Sky News has reported that Tesco claims that 9,000 jobs in total will be hit in the restructure. He is aiming to make £1.5billion in cost savings by 2020 and has already cut more than 10,000 jobs since he took over the supermarket giant in 2014.

I wonder what Dave have in mind for the next 100 years?