Co-op reports four-fold increase in online grocery orders

Co-op has reported a four-fold increase in online food orders in the 26 weeks ended 4 July 2020, with the Covid-19 pandemic fuelling a “rapid increase” in the grocer’s delivery and digital offer.

Initiatives include an expansion of its rapid delivery partnership with Deliveroo and Co-op is aiming to provide online home delivery and click & collect from over 650 of its stores by the end of this year.

This eCommerce growth helped increase overall revenue for the retailer by 7.6% in the first half of 2020, which it says was driven by “exceptional food and wholesale performances”. Food sales grew 5.2% year-on-year during this period, helped by customers in lockdown shopping closer to home thereby increasing sales in convenience stores.

The group added that it had experienced additional costs related to Covid-19 of £54 million, including new recruitment and PPE purchase, and expects such costs to rise to £97 million for the full year.

Co-op also reiterated its commitment to invest £130 million in opening over 65 new and extended stores, which is expected to create up to 1,000 local jobs.

Steve Murrells, chief executive of the Co-op commented: “We are living in unprecedented times, but the response of our Co-op has been exceptional and I’m immensely proud of my 60,000 colleagues who’ve helped to feed and care for the nation during this difficult period. We’ve shown how our co-operative approach to doing business provides enhanced value for our customer-members and the communities in which they live. At a time of crisis, our country needs a strong and progressive Co-op and these results evidence that we are ready to deliver even more for our key stakeholders.”

He added: “The coming months and years remain uncertain, and we know our own Co-op will not be immune to the pressures the recession brings to family budgets and to local and national economies. We will continue to invest within our core businesses to ensure that our Co-op value resonates within Co-op households and local communities.”