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Background to the Asda/Sainsbury's EFRA Committee hearing

Asda House

Information for journalists following Roger Burnley's appearance at the EFRA Committee on 20th June 2018.

On-the-record statement:

An Asda spokesperson said:

“We welcomed the opportunity to share with the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee why Asda’s proposed merger with Sainsbury’s will benefit customers, suppliers - including our local UK suppliers - and colleagues by creating a stronger, more sustainable business. By joining forces, Asda and Sainsbury’s will be able to do an even better job for their customers – and by getting it right for customers, everybody wins.

“We are constantly trying to work more effectively with our suppliers and to support them and, as part of this, last year we reduced our payment terms for about 1,700 small suppliers to 14 days.”

For background:

The market share numbers cited by Asda CEO Roger Burnley during the session refer to the market share for all grocery sales in the UK – not just grocery sales in supermarkets. We have used the most reputable and respected three industry data sources (Kantar, Nielsen and GlobalData/ Verdict) to deliver an average grocery sales market share for Asda of 12% and Sainsbury’s of 13%, which together constitutes the 25% market share that Roger referenced. We believe the data we’re using is a more accurate reflection of how customers buy their groceries today.

Kantar data

  • 12.7% for Asda and 13.6% Sainsbury’s. This is based on all Grocery sales. Unlike the Grocer Shares quoted by the Committee, it includes M&S, Bargain Stores (such as B&M and Poundland) and other smaller independents. It is clearly marked as the ‘Market Share’ in Kantar.

In addition, we also use two other datasets:

GlobalData/ Verdict

  • This estimates Sainsbury’s as 12.1% and 11.4% for Asda. (end of 2017 12.2%, Sainsburys, 11.4% Asda)
  • GlobalData/ Verdict's data includes a complete read of the total market – this is more similar to the Kantar Grocery sales. It includes M&S, Bargain Stores and smaller independents


  • This estimates Sainsbury’s market share at 13% and Asda at 11.5%
  • Nielsen uses scan at home technology and this can mean that certain categories – for example drinks and alcohol – are not included