MORRISONS claimed success in a supermarket price war as it unveiled a better-than-expected rise in annual profits.
The UK’s fourth-largest supermarket chain, which has Huddersfield stores at Waterloo and Meltham and 455 outlets UK-wide, lifted underlying profits by 8% to £935m in the year to January 29. The City had been expecting profits of about £922m.
Like-for-like sales excluding VAT and fuel rose by 1%.
Chief executive Dalton Philips said its budget M Savers range had performed well and the supermarket offered “promotions that customers understood”.
Tesco sparked a price war last September when it unveiled the Big Price Drop campaign – prompting Sainsbury’s, Asda and Morrisons to follow suit.
Bradford-based Morrisons pledged to roll out convenience stores throughout 2012 after the successful trial of three stores last year – but the firm is not expected to reveal its plans for selling online until the end of its current financial year, which is in January.
Morrisons’ shares closed yesterday up by 4.0p at 289.7p.