Online supermarket Ocado Retail is seeing “very little” trading down to lower priced items by customers seeking to make savings as the cost of living increases, its boss said on Thursday.
Chairman Tim Steiner told reporters a 15 per cent year-on-year fall in Ocado’s average basket size to £124 in its latest quarter mainly reflected customers gradually returning to pre-COVID behaviour.
“People are still working from home several days of the week, those that were able to work from home, and we think that is a basket booster,” he said.
“That is getting offset at the moment by a bit of euphoria that we’re all allowed out and we can go to a restaurant.”
Steiner said a further factor in basket size was the addition of 108,000 new customers in the quarter. He said new customers for their first five to ten shops have smaller baskets than long term customers.
Revenues at the retailer- a joint venture with Marks & Spencer – fell 5.7 per cent to £564.7m year-on-year during its fiscal first quarter to 27 February.
Whilst Ocado Retail did raise prices during the first quarter, the increases were “at much lower numbers than I read about in the press,” Steiner added.