Ocado crowned best performing company on FTSE 350

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Ocado shares

Ocado has been crowned the best performing company on the FTSE 350 over 2018, as the company invested heavily in expanding its automation and technology arms.

The online grocer saw its stock prices increase by 93.4 per cent since the start of the year to 768p per share, thanks to numerous major international deals.

Its investment in developing automated warehouses led to Ocado securing a landmark deal with US grocery giant Kroger, which will see it supply the company with 20 automated warehouses, sending its share prices skyrocketing 44 per cent equating to around £2 billion.

During the year, Ocado Solutions – the arm of the retailer which licenses its automated technology and software to third party companies – also secured deals in France, Canada and Sweden, solidifying its standing as an international company.

Meanwhile in the UK, Ocado increased investment in developing its fulfilment centres Erith, which now processes more than 30,000 orders a week, up from 20,000 it reported earlier in the year.

“We will need additional capacity in the UK despite ramping up Erith,” Ocado finance chief Duncan Tatton-Brown said, announcing plans to open a fifth distribution centre in the UK.

“Because these take two years to build, we need to make a commitment relatively soon.”

Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner said that 2018 had been “transformative”, adding that 2019 was expected to be another busy year.

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