Ocado to tap investors for over £1bn cash injection

Online grocer Ocado has revealed plans to raise more than £1 billion after a surge in sales following the coronavirus lockdown.

It said it intends to secure £657 million through a share placing and is looking to secure a further £350 million in bonds.

The company has seen demand surge as customers have been forced to stay at home in the face of the pandemic.

Ocado founder and chief executive officer Tim Steiner said the fundraiser will allow the group “flexibility to move at increased pace” and capitalise on opportunities in the medium-term.

Ocado told investors on Wednesday that it believes “many customers who have purchased groceries online in recent months, will continue to do so” after lockdown restrictions unwind.

It said the fundraiser will help support partners of its Ocado Solutions technology business as online grocery demand continues to increase globally.

Funding will also be used to help sign-up new partners to use its technology and to invest in innovation at a faster pace, it said.

Mr Steiner said: “Online grocery is experiencing an inflection point.

“The current crisis is proving a catalyst for permanent and significant acceleration in channel shift globally which we believe will redraw the landscape for the grocery industry worldwide.

“Ocado’s model is proven, providing a flexible platform with the best customer offer and economics, and we are already the partner of choice for nine of the world’s largest grocery retailers.

“The significant acceleration in online grocery provides us with greater opportunities than ever before.”

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