Tesco is one of the biggest British general merchandising and retail chain in the UK and Europe. It is the second largest retailer globally in terms of profits and third in terms of revenue. It started as a store specialised in drink and food but later intervened into different market areas such as home, health, consumer electronics, telecoms, clothing, and car insurance, financial services, dental plans, retailing and renting DVDs, Music downloads Internet services and software. Jack Cohen was the founder of Tesco in the year 1919. Over the years Tesco has developed mightily in its stores and its brand value. It owns over 1878 stores in the United Kingdom and secured its place and name in the market.
Tesco public limited company has made a lot of changes since its evolution taking over lot of ailing retail stores across UK. It came up with innovative ideas and options to attract public & increase its market. It overtook some of the leading retail stores like Sainsbury's and ASDA by dominating the UK grocery retail market by 28% in 2004.
It came up with the idea of online purchasing and by 2006 it is the only store earning profits through its online sales. Tesco introduced its telecom division, home phones and internet services in the UK in October 2004. Following that in 2004 it started its own broadband services. It launched its own brand fair trade range in the year 2004 providing its own manufactured products. This resulted in reducing the commissions to external products. It was the first retail store to chart as the only British retail market to enter music download market. According to a market research it was revealed that by 2004 TESCO employs almost 237,000 only in Britain.
In this year tesco launched Tesco home plus offering only home based products apart from food. It is a food store. The introduction of this concept was not a big surprising change as it did not click that well. At the moment there are only 12 stores nationwide. But the introduction of homeplus added n extra business area to tesco.
In the financial perspective the growth has increased from 1.6 billion pounds to 2 billion pounds compared to the year 2004.This profit has occurred due to the introductions and changes in 2004. According to the surveys in 2003 and 2004 Tesco was voted as the number one retail store in terms of its corporate leaders. But the performance and environmental responsibility of the company failed in the year 2005 and in came down to the fourth place.
In late 2005 Tesco took over the 21 Safeway/BP stores after Morrisons dissolved the Safeway/BP partnership.
Tesco stood as one of the winners as it continues to benefit from time-strapped shoppers looking for convenience.
In December 2006 tesco introduced a new system of cash desks without cashiers which automatically greets customers and charges the goods with te help of bar codes on the product. This change in the system has become a hit by reducing the workforce and analysing the product price weight and details. But this has not become popular especially when the goods are groceries.
Tesco's club card scheme had a major re launch in 2005 with all members being sent personalised cards and key jobs which could be scanned at the checkout, rather than swiped.
In the year 2007 Tesco joined its hands with O2 in a joint venture for the formation of Tesco Mobile. A business alliance has been made in the year with Esso that included taking over many petrol stations in 1997.Exactly after 10 years over 600 Tesco and Esso stores are found across UK. The petrol stations are attached to the Tesco Express stores and Esso operated the stations outside tesco stores.
In 2007 Tesco has moved its head office for online shopping to Switzerland .The change in the head office has given tesco an advantage of selling its CD's, games and Music online through its website without charging VAT. Tesco face national disruption to its distribution network by road in its supply chain and has made alternate changes through rail and canal. The changes have been made in the view of fuel prices, road congestion and carbon foot print.
Tesco's other market area the Tesco bank which was formerly a 50:50 share with Royal Bank of Scotland. Tesco bought 50% stake from RBS which provided growth externally apart from retail industry. It provided banking services such as credit cards, loans, mortgages, savings accounts and several types of insurance, including car, home, life and travel.
With the operation of petrol station Tesco faced a lot of opposition by the motorists in the south east England that the fuel is contaminated and it breaks down the bikes on the go. Teasco changed this situation generously by paying back for all the customers who have faced problem using its petrol and apologising in public news papers.
Tesco announces its proposals to on cash and carry outlets in India in a joint venture with TATA. It made expansions over various parts of the world such as US, Indonesia, Ireland, Korea, China, Czech Republic, Thailand, Japan, Poland and many other places.
Tesco Finance which was the previous name to Tesco bank has completed its acquisitions in 2008.
In 2009 the sales has increased to £59.4 billion in 2009 compared to £51.8 billion in 2008. 36% of sales are from the UK compared to the world market .in the UK tesco survived well with recovering competitors and a difficult non-food market in the second half of 2009 to deliver solid progress in the year. It has developed its operations in every aspect delivering consistently, making jobs easier to do, saving money and time. It put forth a lot of significance for its customers and employees by providing equal opportunities and development and by treating them with respect.
It is planning to change the structure of the stores with the approval of the government and expanding the size and ease of parking to access the stores baring in mind the customers.
It employs around 468,508 staff around the world out of which 286,394 are the staff employed in the United Kingdom.
It follows a balanced score card approach to measure and manage its performance. Proper analysis of the operations and the strategies and risk management enables the company's continuous growth and development. Being customer focused which is the main priority in the retail industry Tesco managed to gain a name for cost effectiveness and availability of products and stores. Tesco has setup its own weather team to help its stock the right products for the changeable British weather.
Its growth is driven by a strategy that has been predominantly organic used their skills and knowledge in store formatting, supply chain management, understanding customers, new product development, and adapting to local customer needs and to create strong business models.
It has introduced Tesco basics which offers products cost effectively to its customers or to medium class people and students. With the introduction of this it has gained huge response from students in the economic crisis and recession. It competes with other stores in quality such as M&S and sainsbury's by offering similar quality products for a better price. Over the years TESco has gradually raised its standards and expanded its operation and business areas widening its giant kingdom. It is one among the top retail stores operating in the UK. Retail industry is a game where there is a huge competition in offereing better services and products. Tesco not only having its business operation in retail but in other areas such as Fuel, Banking, Mobiles and internet is firm and not near to any disasters or downfalls. With the rapid growth in their operations in retail industry Tesco has become a nightmare for many other small retail stores and off license stores across UK. Offering products for reasonable prices it has been one of the major disadvantages for small stores. It took many measures like Climate control for environmental awareness and to stop pollution and its effects on the public. It manufactured organic products for health conscious people. It has recently introduced a step change programme to drive its sales this year.
Having a good history and a record of growth in the past TESCO has made a lot of changes and has coped well with most of the changes and proved its ability and capability to survive in the retail industry. It has been in the industry for many decades and has made its own image in the market. With its continuous growth and changes according to the trends and the needs of the customers TESCO is looking ahead for the future development and stay secure its place in the first position in the market in terms of Quality, standards and services