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LONDON, Oct 18 (Reuters) - Britain's biggest supermarket chain Tesco grew its market share for the first time in five years after three-month sales rose 1.3 percent, providing further evidence that the grocer's turnaround plan is working.
Market researcher Kantar Worldpanel said on Tuesday that Tesco grew sales by 1.3 percent in the 12 weeks to October 9, reversing 18 months of declining sales, and helping boost its share of Britain's grocery market to 28.2 percent.
The data shows Tesco is pulling ahead of its three biggest rivals in Britain's supermarket sector, as No.2 player Sainsbury's posted a 0.4 percent fall, followed by sector laggard Asda which recorded a 5.2 percent drop, and Morrisons whose sales declined by 3 percent.
Tesco's market share growth shows that its fightback against the rise of German discounters Aldi and Lidl is working, with shoppers won over by its lower prices, streamlined product ranges and better customer service.
Tesco shares traded up 1.8 percent to 205 pence, outperforming Britain's bluechip index which was trading 0.8 percent higher. (Reporting by Sarah Young; editing by Kate Holton)