Wednesday, June 29, 2005

When perception bears no relation to reality

Since moving to a new flat recently, my nearest Supermarket is no longer the wonderful (but extortionately expensive) Waitrose and is now a Tesco Metro.

Tesco have an almost mythical reputation in the UK. Press reports gush over how they take 1 in every 8 pounds spent in UK shops, how they're a phenomenally good retailer, how they're light years ahead of everyone else, etc, etc.

Yet... this bears no relation to the reality that I experience. Now - perhaps Waitrose means my expectations have been unfairly raised but, anecdotally, it's not confined to the Canary Wharf branch.

Things I - or friends - have noticed include:

* Long queues
* Empty shelves
* Prices that are not as low as you would expect from their reputation (apparently the contrast between the brand new Asda store on Old Kent Road and the ageing Tesco across the road is stark)

Perhaps I've just been unlucky.

If I owned their stock, however, I'd be considering what to do with it. When what you see and what you hear don't coincide, I get worried.

All it takes is one bad quarter and things can look very, very different....

1 comment:

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