Ocado Retail CEO remains ‘confident’ in value offering despite consumer spend cutbacks

Ocado Retail CEO Hannah Gibson has said that she remains “confident” in the company’s value offering, despite consumers cutting back on online grocery spending in response to the cost-of-living crisis.

The online supermarket reported a retail revenue of £549.4m and delivered its “biggest ever” Christmas last year, despite shoppers buying less and shopping less frequently as they respond to the cost-of-living crisis.

During today’s results call, Gibson emphasised Ocado’s focus on investing in value for customers, reinforcing that Ocado’s everyday savers offer a “fantastic” range of everyday fridge and cupboard essentials at great prices.

“We continue to see customers enjoying that range and buying more of it,” she says.

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“But we’re also seeing other trends as well,” she adds.

“We’re seeing customers trade more into chilled and frozen items – and our ready meals have seen growth as more people are staying at home. Over Christmas, we saw party food up 35% and English sparkling wine up 70%.”

Ocado Retail has continued to work closely with its suppliers to deliver cost savings and keep costs as low as possible. A Which? study revealed that Ocado prices increased by 9.4% over 2022, more than 4% lower than the overall market and the lowest of all the major supermarkets.

Pointing out that Ocado Retail now has close to 1 million active customers, Gibson also told media she sees “huge potential” to convert those who have trialled online shopping elsewhere to become Ocado customers.

Gibson also focused on Ocado’s ‘perfect execution’ in 2023, which she predicts will set the foundation for accelerated growth into 2024 and beyond.

“The year ahead will set us up to deliver strong sales and profit growth over the mid-term. In 2023 we will continue to strengthen and improve our leading customer proposition, including investing in value to help customers manage cost of living pressures, while keeping tight control of our costs.

“Enabled by differentiated technology from Ocado group and M&S magic, we have great confidence in our proposition – this is unbeatable choice, amazing service, and great value.

“I remain confident in our ability to reset the ball in online grocery retailing, delivering even greater value for customers, and an even better experience online over time.”



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