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Company: John Lewis Partnership PLC

Brand value: US$1,229 million

Headquarter city: Bracknell                      

Industry: Retail

Year formed: 1904


Waitrose is an upmarket supermarket chain that, in times when much of the growth in UK grocery is going to discounters, is focusing on the quality of its produce and the specialist services it offers. The business takes pride in the high standards of its butcher, deli, fish and bakery counters, and has introduced juicing bars and eating areas in store, so shoppers can stop and buy food and drink during their shopping trip. Waitrose stores also have a hotel-style “welcome desk”, and offer dry cleaning and click-and-collect services. While they are generally more expensive than other supermarkets, the own-brand Waitrose Essentials range is more price competitive. There are more than 350 Waitrose stores in the UK. Recent innovations include the option to self-scan shopping and pay via mobile phone. The brand positions itself as a champion of British produce and fair treatment for suppliers and customers to encourage sustainable healthy living. In mid-2017, Waitrose pledged to increase its fleet of bio-methane delivery vehicles to reduce pollution, and in 2016 it allowed members of the public to watch live-streamed video from its partner farms showing customers the direct source of their milk and eggs, with footage also used in its TV advertising. The campaign used the tagline “Everything we do goes into everything you taste” and has continued into 2017, with an ad that showed tuna being line-caught. Waitrose has also partnered with Channel 4 to sponsor its popular food programmes, including Jamie and Jimmy’s Friday Night Feast, Fearless Chefs, Celebrity MasterChef, and The Hairy Bikers. In May 2017, department store John Lewis and Waitrose started testing the idea of running joint marketing campaigns, as both have the same parent company and similar positioning in the market. Waitrose exports to 60 countries and sells to many more through the online store British Corner Shop. Parent company John Lewis Plc is privately owned.