SYDNEY (FNS) -- Australia's third largest supermarket, Franklins, has lost more of its food market share, but managing director Ian Cornell has expressed confidence the chain will be able to halt further declines.
Cornell revealed that Franklin's share of dry packaged groceries fell from 13.4% to 12.7% during the last quarter, and down from 15% in 1996-97. Those declines follow in the wake of new store openings by the other two leading supermarket chains, Coles and Woolworths.
Woolworths raised its share of the market by 0.4% to 35.9% while its Australian Independent Wholesalers subsidiary was included in the survey for the first time with market share of 1.7%, up from 0.9% in 1997-98.
According to the latest ACNeilsen survey, Woolworths' market share in September had stood at 35.9%, Coles at 32% and Franklins 13.4% before the latter lost ground. The survey includes dairy and frozen products (but not fresh meat, fruit and vegetables), and delicatessen and bakery produce.
Franklins is counter-attacking with plans for new stores and a fresh food strategy that Cornell hopes will help the chain retain its standing. That strategy involves a boost of 2% (from 13% to 15%) in fresh sales as a percentage of total sales, compared with the Woolworths and Coles figure of 25%.