Press releases

John Lewis Christmas trading statement - five weeks to 31 December 2011

Wednesday 4 January 2012

John Lewis today publishes its trading update for the five weeks to 31 December 2011. Total sales were £596m, 9.3 per cent up compared with last year. Like-for-like sales were +6.2 per cent. Compared with two years ago total sales were 19.1 per cent up whilst like-for-like sales grew by +14.4 per cent.

Over the same period, Electricals and Home Technology sales were 4.0 per cent up. Fashion, including beauty, was 10.3 per cent up whilst Home increased by 13.6 per cent; figures which reflect gains in market share in all categories.

Online sales for the five weeks were 27.9 per cent up on last year. Online sales have now exceeded £600m for the year to date.

The fourth week of the period (Sunday 18 December to Saturday 24 December inclusive) saw sales of £124.7m, up 32.7 per cent on 2010 sales for the equivalent week - a very strong performance even with an extra day's trade that week.

The fifth week of the period (Sunday 25 December to Saturday 31 December inclusive) saw sales of £101.3m, which, although down 4.8 per cent year on year, were against sales for the week before the VAT increase on 1 January 2011.

Andy Street, Managing Director of John Lewis, said: 'Sales during the four weeks to Christmas Eve were outstanding. During that period we broke the record for our biggest week ever with a sterling total of £133.1m for the week ending 17 December. The first week of Clearance saw a very strong start, but against the pre-VAT increase week in 2010, it was always going to be a challenge to match sales, particularly with 'big ticket' items.

'The strength of our online operation was very much in evidence during this key five week period, confirming our strength as a pre-eminent multi-channel retailer. Sales at broke through the £600m milestone during December and our Click and Collect operation, giving customers the flexibility of buying online and collecting from 129 John Lewis and Waitrose branches, continued operating right up to Christmas Eve in John Lewis and saw a 90 per cent increase in usage.

'Above all our success can be attributed to the excellent service delivered by our Partners as well as inspiring products and outstanding value. Although trade in 2012 will undoubtedly be challenging and economic conditions volatile, John Lewis will continue to be the trusted retailer of choice for our customers and will always fulfill its 'Never Knowingly Undersold' promise.'

Notes to editors

The John Lewis Partnership - The John Lewis Partnership operates 35 John Lewis shops across the UK (29 department stores and six John Lewis at home), and 271 Waitrose supermarkets. The business has annual gross sales of over £8.2bn. It is the UK's largest example of worker co-ownership where all 76,500 staff are Partners in the business.

John Lewis - John Lewis, 'Britain's favourite retailer 2010'* and 'Multiple Department Store of the Year 2010' ** typically stocks more than 350,000 separate lines in its department stores. The website stocks over 150,000 products focused on the best of fashion, beauty, home and giftware and electrical items including online exclusives. is consistently ranked one of the top online shopping destinations in the UK. ( John Lewis Insurance offers a range of comprehensive insurance products - home, car, wedding and event, travel and pet insurance and life cover - delivering the usual values of expertise, trust and customer service expected from the John Lewis brand.

John Lewis is proud to be the official department store provider to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.  

John Lewis and London 2012 - As part of this partnership with LOCOG (The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games) John Lewis operates official London 2012 shops within its Oxford Street branch and Stratford City shops. John Lewis is helping to furnish lounge and reception areas at key Games-time venues as well as offering Partners (staff) the opportunity to support LOCOG in the operation and build-up to the Games. Further to the sponsorship with LOCOG, John Lewis Partnership has developed 'Partners in Sport' an initiative to put something back into the community through sport which includes sponsoring several London 2012 hopefuls as well as funding sports coaches.
* Verdict consumer satisfaction index, January 2011
** The Drapers Awards for fashion retail, November 2010
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For further information please contact:

Amy Shields
Senior Manager, Corporate, Digital and Branch PR
John Lewis
Telephone: 020 7592 6452
Mobile: 07525 273 077

Helen Dickinson
Head of Communications
John Lewis
Telephone: 020 7592 6274
Mobile: 07785 952 567