Ocado Group confirms talks with Morrisons as it posts sales jump

Online grocery firm Ocado Group revealed it was in negotiations with Morrison Supermarkets to launch a shopping site as it posted a 14.4 per cent rise in sales.

Online grocery firm Ocado Group revealed it was in negotiations with Morrison Supermarkets to launch a shopping site as it posted a 14.4 per cent rise in sales.

Ocado is in discussions to help Morrisons set up a grocery website the UK as more consumers opt to do their shopping online.

It may lead to an agreement to license some of Ocado's existing and future intellectual property and operating knowledge for the purposes of the website.

Ocado's partnership with Waitrose would not be affected by a potential agreement with Morrisons, the firm stressed.

The group made the announcement alongside its results for the 12 weeks to February 24th which showed gross sales rose to £185.5m from £162.1m the previous year.

Average orders per week grew 12% year-on-year to 130,995 as the company benefited from an increase in online consumer spending.

"We maintained the momentum in sales growth and new customer acquisition with which we entered the year," Chief Executive Officer, Tim Steiner, said.

"Further improvements to the proposition to customers that we are making this year should enhance our appeal to shoppers and enable us to continue this momentum."

The company expanded its operations during the period to meet demand, with the opening of a customer fulfilment centre at Dordon, Warwickshire.

Ocado's first dedicated non-food distribution centre also became operational in January, one month ahead of schedule, supporting the strategy for further sales and range growth in non-food.

Shares rocketed 9.68% to 150.70p at 08:20 Thursday.

RD

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