Coles has delivered its third quarter results, which has detailed sales growth in the group’s liquor business.
Coles still reports its liquor results within the food and liquor pairing and the results showed that headline food and liquor sales for the third quarter were $7.8bn, up 1.9 per cent on the prior corresponding period. That result means that the food and liquor sales for the financial year to date have increased 1.9 per cent to $25.1bn.
Further Coles reported that its comparable food and liquor sales increased by 0.9 per cent for the quarter. After adjusting for the impact of the timing of New Year’s Day and Easter in the third quarter, compared to the prior corresponding period, comparable food and liquor sales increased 1.3 per cent.
For the financial year to date, comparable food and liquor sales increased 0.9 per cent and comparable food sales increased 0.9 per cent.
Coles also said that its food and liquor price deflation was 0.7 per cent during the quarter, resulting in food and liquor price deflation of 1.3 per cent for the financial year to date. The company said that the reduction in price deflation from 0.9 per cent in the second quarter primarily reflected lower supply-driven deflation across produce and meat, and increased supply-driven inflation across dairy categories.
Coles’ outgoing Managing Director, John Durkan, said that the liquor business had delivered sales growth and that the company was focused on value, quality and service.
“Continued improvement in customer satisfaction levels was a highlight for the quarter, particularly in the areas of customer service, range and availability, which supported continued growth in customer transactions,” Durkan said.
“Online sales growth accelerated in the quarter as we continued to focus on meeting the changing needs of our customers.
“During the quarter we launched our new brand positioning ‘Good things are happening at Coles’ and our exciting new Sports for Schools program, initiatives which will continue to build trust with our customers and position us well for long term growth.”
He added: “The Liquor business continued to deliver growth in sales, with significant opportunity remaining to improve the product range and provide greater convenience for our customers.”
In terms of its store numbers, overall Coles Liquor expanded its store network with four new stores opened and one closed during the quarter.
At the end of the period, Coles had a total of 897 liquor stores, made up of 98 1st Choice, 84 Vintage Cellars and 715 Liquorland stores plus 88 hotels, with a total of 213,423 square metres of liquor selling space, excluding hotels.