Ocado sees sales surge by over 50% prior to M&S switchover

Ocado Retail has reported a 52% growth in revenue in the 13 weeks to 30 August, as the online grocery company continued to see demand surge during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Revenue reached £587.3 million in this period, up from £386.4 million at the same time last year.

The group added that sales grew faster than in Q2, in which revenue went up by 40.4%, as a result of an increase in weekly orders. This was driven by continued strong demand, a phased reopening of its website to new customers, and a normalisation of shopping patterns.

The trading update comes just two weeks after Ocado’s joint venture with M&S went live, which saw the online grocer switch from providing Waitrose-branded goods. And Ocado revealed that since the go-live of M&S products on Ocado.com in the first week of August, the average basket has increased by around five items. It added that 98% of customers are already shopping for M&S products.

In addition to 4,400 M&S food products, Ocado.com also features around 700 of the retailer’s home and lifestyle product lines.

Melanie Smith, chief executive officer at Ocado Retail, said: “These are transformational times for Ocado Retail with M&S products now exclusively available online at Ocado.com. The successful switchover means that M&S products are available to buy in a weekly shop side by side with branded products for the first time. As a result, we can now offer customers more choice and better value than ever before, wider ranges than any traditional retailer, and thousands of products that are only available online through Ocado.com.”

She added: “Our aim is to continue to set the bar as we begin again to welcome new customers who are seeing the benefits of online shopping in ever greater numbers and we remain focused and on track to increase capacity by 40% through to 2021.”