By Tom Degun

SainsburysOctober 8 - Sainsbury's sponsorship of the London 2012 Paralympic Games has helped it outperform its rivals, including the United Kingdom's biggest supermarket retailer Tesco, after it revealed its latest sales figures in their Quarter Trading Statement for the 16 weeks up to September 29.

The figures show Sainsbury's had a 1.9 per cent rise in like-for-like sales – excluding fuel but including VAT – compared with 1.4 per cent growth in the 12 weeks to June 9.

The increase came as their main rival Tesco revealed just a 0.2 per cent growth in like-for-like sales – also excluding fuel and including VAT – across a similar trading period.

Industry experts says the trading boost was dramatically helped by Sainsbury's sponsorship of this summer's Paralympics, where the brand received a huge promotion as it featured in regular adverts during Channel 4's record-breaking coverage of the event.

"This has been a unique and special summer, during which we have delivered another quarter of good sales, outperforming the market in what remains a challenging retail environment," said Sainsbury's chief executive Justin King.

"Our total sales are up 4.3 per cent, and like-for-like sales up 1.9 per cent.

"The quarter began with the period immediately following the Jubilee celebrations, and was characterised by unseasonal weather.

"The quarter ended with the Olympic and Paralympic Games, which united and inspired the nation.

"We were delighted to play our part in helping customers celebrate this summer like no other, and are particularly proud of Sainsbury's association with the Paralympic Games."

justin kingSainsbury’s chief executive Justin King, left, says the supermarket is “particularly proud” of its association with the Paralympic Games

Sainsbury's signed a historic deal with London 2012 in May 2010 to become the first ever Tier One Paralympic-only sponsor and became a very visible presence at the Games.

Its London 2012 sponsorship expires at the end of this year but Sainsbury's has already announced a four-year sponsorship deal with the British Paralympic Association (BPA) that will begin next year and include the Sochi 2014 Winter Paralympics and the Rio 2016 Summer Paralympics.

The announcement came last month as Sainsbury's also launched its London 2012 Paralympic legacy programme – Sainsbury's Active Kids For All – which looks to promote inclusive Physical Education and sport in schools and communities.

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