Sainsburys invests big in entertainment

Games will receive more floor space at Sainsbury’s over the next year after significantly driving both sales and footfall in 2009.

The supermarket enjoyed its fifth consecutive year of like-for-like growth in the entertainment sector, as well as a 17.5 per cent rise in profit.

Non-food MD Luke Jensen announced the company is investing 1.3bn in building space over the next year – and the bulk of that will go to non-food.

Games manager Gurdeep Hunjan added that games will receive five per cent more space before Christmas, and 12 per cent over the next 18 months.

Entertainment products will also become more prominent in stores, including the new 100,000 sq ft store, which opens later this year.

The sector will also receive between 45,000 and 50,000 sq ft in the newly-announced ‘new format’ stores, which will have a greater focus on non-food and entertainment.

Richard Crampton, Sainsbury’s entertainment head, believes these unique stores will be particularly beneficial for games firms.

Whether you’re Sony, Microsoft or Nintendo, there’s a great opportunity to showcase your brand and products in a completely different way,” he said.

Sainsbury’s also announced it will launch a digital distribution service for all forms of entertainment.

We will sell people things digitally through an integrated online basket,” said Crampton. Customers either buy the CD or download it – it’s their choice, and that will be the case with all formats.”

Hunjan said games will play a major role” in this venture.

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