StockMarketWire.com - Online grocery group Ocado narrowed its first-half losses after Covid-19 lockdowns contributed to a boost in revenue that was nevertheless offset by continued investments in its logistics business.

Pre-tax losses for the six months through March amounted to £40.6m, compared to losses of £147.4m on-year, as revenue climbed 23% to £1.09bn.

Ocado did not declare any dividends.

Revenue at the company's retail business, recently split into a joint venture with Marks & Spencer, rose 27% to £1.02bn.

Fees invoiced to the logistics unit, also known as the solutions business, jumped 58% to £73.7m, following the opening of the company's first partner customer fulfilment centres in Paris and Toronto.

'As a result of Covid-19 we have seen years of growth in the online grocery market condensed into a matter of months; and we won't be going back,' chief executive Tim Steiner said.

'We are confident that accelerated growth in the online channel will continue, leading to a permanent redrawing of the landscape of the grocery industry worldwide.'

'This will mean more demand for Ocado smart platform from current and prospective partners and our recent fundraising will ensure that we are able to meet that demand.'

'It will also mean that we can invest more capital in innovation for our partners and further expand our leadership as the world's preeminent solutions provider in online grocery.'



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