Ocado unveils fresh tech tie-up with French partner Casino

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Ocado unveils fresh tech tie-up with French partner Casino offering its software to retailers in the country for the first time

  •  Ocado Group and Groupe Casino have announced new tie-up deal plans
  • Ocado posted a stinging £176.9m annual loss earlier this month 


Online tech firm Ocado Group and French retailer Groupe Casino have announced plans to develop e-commerce logistics centres for retailers in France in a major expansion of their partnership.

Ocado will also deploy its in-store fulfilment solution across the French company’s Monoprix stores, the duo said on Thursday.

The deal will enable Ocado to offer its software to retailers across France for the first time. 

New plan: Ocado Group and Groupe Casino have announced plans to develop e-commerce logistics centres for retailers in France

New plan: Ocado Group and Groupe Casino have announced plans to develop e-commerce logistics centres for retailers in France

Ocado boss Tim Steiner, said: ‘The online grocery channel in France has reached an inflection point, with a huge rise in demand for compelling, affordable and efficient grocery e-commerce propositions.’

He added: ‘This announcement marks a deepening of the relationship between Groupe Casino and Ocado Group, and it will further support the capital light expansion of our partnership into other French regions.

‘For the first time, it will also open up the whole of the French grocery market to Ocado’s solutions.’   

There is not expected to be any initial capital cost for either Ocado or Groupe Casino in creating the joint venture, the companies added.

The group also announced proposals to bring on board French online retailer Cdiscount’s Octopia marketplace platform into its own Ocado Smart Platform, which it said will offer new ‘flexibility and functionality to its global partners.’

Groupe Casino boss Jean-Charles Naouri, said: ‘After having experienced the success of the Ocado solution with Monoprix Plus, Casino Plus and Naturalia Marche Bio, the French consumers will be able to benefit from new, even more efficient e-commerce services, making their daily needs even easier.’

Shares in Ocado are up 0.26 per cent or 3.50p to 1,346.00p. A year ago the share price was 2,593.00p, meaning it has dropped by around 48 per cent in the past year. 

Earlier this month, Ocado warned tha, although online grocery sales have continued to rise, growth had been limited by a shortage of lorry drivers and a fire at one of its distribution centres.

It posted a 4.6 per cent rise in sales at its retail arm – a joint venture with Marks & Spencer – to £2.3billion in the year to the end of November, thanks to continued strong demand for home deliveries, with sales also 41.5 per cent higher than in 2019.

Revenues at its tech division, which provides automated fulfilment centres and warehouses for its supermarket clients around the world, also jumped to £66.6million from £16.6million the prior year.

At a group level, Ocado revenues rose 7.2 per cent to £2.5billion.

However, pre-tax losses widened from £52.3million to £176.9million as Ocado invested heavily in its platform and robot warehouses, with the group now expecting to miss analysts’ forecasts for the current year.

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