Online grocery delivery firm Ocado has raised its full year profits guidance from £40m to £60m as income soars amid the global coronavirus pandemic.
In a brief statement to the London Stock Exchange the company said trading at Ocado Retail Ltd, which is a joint venture with Marks & Spencer, has remained strong through the fourth quarter of the current financial year.
Ocado sees high demand
“Ocado continues to see high demand as consumers migrate to online grocery in record numbers”, the firm said.
“Sales are in line with the trends reported in the Third Quarter although growth rates reflect the seasonality of the quarter.
“As a result of this strong performance, Ocado Group today announces that it expects full year EBITDA for the group to be over £60m, versus previous guidance of over £40m.
The 40% rise in profit expectations is in stark contrast to the fortunes of high street fashion retailer Primark, which today said the second UK lockdown could cost it up to £375m in lost sales.
Ocado said will provide a Fourth Quarter trading update on the 10th of December, with full year results due next February. M&S is due to report interim results on Wednesday 4 November.
The digital grocer also announced two major acquisitions on Monday worth around $287m. Both are in the robotics space and come as the COVID19 virus continues to force the closure of businesses with human labour forces.
The group said it was buying Kindred Systems Inc for $262 million and Haddington Dynamics Inc for $25 million.
Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner said: “We consider the opportunities for robotic manipulation solutions to be significant, both for Ocado Smart Platform clients and across the fast-growing online retail and logistics sectors.
The UK firm’s share were trading 6.5% higher at £24.24 on the LSE on Monday morning.