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Ocado gross sales up 23.8% in 7 days to Xmas

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Online grocer Ocado has seen its stock price rise this morning following a strong Christmas trading statement that revealed double digit growth.

While the four weeks ending December 25th 2011 delivered a sales total of £59 million, an annual increase of 16 per cent, trading during the seven days to Christmas Day only saw a 23.8 per cent jump compared to the same period last year.

After a difficult year which has seen the e-tailer come under increasing pressure for a second distribution centre, or customer fulfilment centre (CFC) as the firm refers to them, full-year sales for the 52 weeks to November 27th rose 16.6 per cent to total £642.8 million.

Operational issues arose surrounding its existing CFC at Hatfield in the third quarter but a pause in site development allowed for increased operational capacity over the last few months.

During Christmas, customer orders grew by almost a quarter year-on-year and 97 per cent of these were either delivered on time or early and 97 per cent arrived exactly as ordered.

Tim Steiner, CEO of Ocado, said: “We are pleased with the performance of the CFC during the four weeks to Christmas as demonstrated by the 21.8 per cent increase in orders.

“Our staff went the extra mile to ensure customers received deliveries on time and in full. Looking ahead, we remain focused on delivering growth in orders at our Hatfield warehouse while maintaining high customer service standards.

“The welcome absence of snow allowed us to release additional delivery slots to customers in the days leading up to Christmas.”

Just before the festive break Ocado announced that it was downgrading profits forecasts for the full-year to a range of between £27.5 million and £28.5 million, down from initial estimates of £44 million, but no confirmation on figures was made today.

Published on Thursday 12 January by Editorial Assistant

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