Tesco Stores is the UK food retailing arm of Tesco plc. It operates 1982 stores across the UK and a further 230 stores in Europe and 79 in Asia.
Tesco's strategy is split between four areas: core UK business, non-food business, retailing services, and international business.
In the UK, it has Extra, Metro, High Street, Superstore and Express store formats. It also operates convenience retailer T&S Stores.
Tesco was founded in 1932 as a private company by TE Stockwell and Jack Cohen, from whom it derives its name. It became a public company in 1947.
In January this year, the firm embarked on a major redesign and promotion of its organic product range, which included in-store promotions and redesigned packaging to offer customers more information on products.
In the same month, Tesco put in a bid to acquire Safeway. Its offer sits alongside those from rivals Sainsbury's, Wal-Mart/Asda and Morrisons.
Tesco is viewed as the least likely to acquire Safeway due to its market dominance.
January also saw Tesco acquire T&S Stores in a pounds 530m deal. T&S has 1202 outlets, which Tesco plans to run as an independent subsidiary, retaining the T&S brand name.
Tesco then announced plans to enter the telecoms market in partnership with Cable & Wireless. It is offering cut-price calls in a bid to take market share from BT.
In February, Tesco launched an environmentally friendly fuel called Biodiesel, a blend of low-sulphur diesel and rapeseed oil it claims reduces greenhouse emissions by 5% and harmful gas emissions by 20%. The introduction of the fuel followed the company's pounds 1.9m purchase of a 25% stake in Greenary Fuels.
Also in February, ads broke for Tesco's financial services offering. …