Fresh & Easy Posts Positive Comps: Tesco CEO

CHESHUNT, England — Tesco's Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market locations that have been operating for several months "have now moved strongly into [comparable-store sales] growth," Sir Terry Leahy, chief executive officer of the parent company, said.

CHESHUNT, England — Tesco's Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market locations that have been operating for several months "have now moved strongly into [comparable-store sales] growth," Sir Terry Leahy, chief executive officer of the parent company, said here last week.

However, he said Fresh & Easy expects to open only 500,000 square feet of new selling space during the second half — down from earlier projections due to the U.S. recession, he noted — "because you can't just buck a downturn of that magnitude."

Leahy said the overall performance of Fresh & Easy "continues to be pleasing," adding that once the U.S. economy bounces back, "we'll be able to step up our rate of growth."

Leahy made his remarks in connection with the release of Tesco's third-quarter interim statement, in which it said corporate sales for the 13 weeks that ended Nov. 22 rose 11.7%, including 5.8% growth in the United Kingdom and 28.1% in its international division.

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