Ocado delivers record Christmas as sales, shares jump

Online grocer Ocado Group (LSE: OCDO) expects “encouraging momentum” to continue in 2024 after a record Christmas trading period.

Ocado shares rose 7.6% to 666.20 pence by 10:00 GMT.

Ocado reported an 11% annual jump in retail revenue to £609.4 million in the 13 weeks to November 26, up from £549.3 million a year prior. This marked the fourth consecutive quarter of revenue growth. Across the full financial year ended November 26, retail revenue rose 7.0% to £2.36 billion from £2.20 billion the previous year.

Trade volumes over the fourth quarter rose by 4.8% to 232.2 million items, up from 221.5 million items a year earlier. Meanwhile, the average selling price was up 5.4% to £2.75 from £2.61. Ocado counted 998,000 active customers in the 13 weeks to November 26, an increase of 5.9% from 942,000 active customers a year prior.

Looking at the key Christmas trading period, Ocado said it delivered record sales, hitting its highest ever level over the peak festive season. Ocado started 2024 with over one million active customers. The company expects overall revenue growth in the mid-high single digits in financial 2024, driven by sustained volume growth, though it cautioned growth may be impacted by decelerating food inflation.

Ocado shares have fallen 141% over the past twelve months.