French group of department stores Leclerc has had sales of 15.9 billion euro in the first halve of 2013. That is a rise of 4.7% when compared to the same period in 2012. Most remarkable is the strong rise in sales of the drives: a rise of no less than 68% to 720 million euro. They helped the company to close part of the remaining gap on the market leader in France, Carrefour.
Drives worth 38% of sales growth
The strong rise of sales of the drives is mainly a result of the expansion of the network of drives: in the first six months of 2013 81 new drives were opened up. At the moment the company opens a new one about once a week. By the end of the year the number will have probably risen past 400, a target that was to be hit by 2015. Leclerc is clearly ahead of schedule.
4.5% of total company sales of Leclerc comes from drives now, but more importantly, they are responsible for 38% of sales growth. Because of this considerable growth, Leclerc is able to increase its market share: about 19% now, 0.8% higher than a year ago.
Not yet overtaken Carrefour
This does not mean the company has succeeded in completing the goal of CEO Eduoard Leclerc: becoming market leader on the French market. According to Kantar World Panel, current number one, Carrefour, was at a market share of 20.4% at the end of June.
In the period between 22 April and 19 May the CEO shortly got what he wanted. Then Leclerc had a share of 19.9% on the French market, slightly better than Carrefour at 19.6%. Afterwards things went back to the way they were before.
It is to be expected the price war between the two chains will continue in the coming months. Leclerc is adamant on being the cheapest chain.