John Lewis focuses on the living room

Total sales for John Lewis & Partners were down 5.6% last week (to Saturday May 25) “as we annualised price matching heavy competitor activity in the same week last year,” said Jon Williams, director of merchandising operations for the department store group.

He explained: “Fashion sales were down 4.3% as we annualised price matching activity, although Beauty had a strong week with sales up 7.3%. The cooler weather compared with last year also particularly affected sales of warm weather items, which were down 18%.

“Home sales were down 7.1%. The weather also particularly affected sales in outdoor living compared with last year. Upholstery sales were up 18.7% as we continue our marketing focus on the living room.

“Electrical and home technology sales were down 5.1%. Sales of large electricals were up 4.7% and we had strong sales of the OnePlus 7 Pro [Smartphone] following last week’s exclusive launch.”

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