In August 2019, Ocado Group completed a joint venture with Marks & Spencer, one of the UK’s leading food and clothing retailers, to serve UK households from Ocado.com.
Operating under Ocado Retail, the Joint Venture (JV) fulfils customer grocery orders from 3 Customer Fulfilment Centres and a network of spokes around the UK. It delivers to geographies spanning 74% of households across the country.
Upon completion of the JV, Ocado Retail also became an Ocado Solutions partner, enabling it to continue delivering a compelling online grocery retail offer with full access to Ocado Solutions’ proprietary technology.
Ocado Retail has committed to order capacity equivalent to a further eight CFCs over the 12 years from completion of the JV.
Tim Steiner, Chief Executive Officer, Ocado, said:
"We are delighted that our UK retail business will become a joint venture with M&S. This is a transformative moment in the UK retail sector with the combination of two iconic and much-loved retail brands set to provide an unrivalled online grocery offer.
We believe that this is the best outcome for customers, offering even greater range, service, quality and value; the best outcome for our Ocado Solutions partners, creating a stronger platform from which to innovate and develop our unique and proprietary technology; the best outcome for Ocado Solutions with a further endorsement from another leading global retailer; and the best outcome for our financial stakeholders, unlocking the significant value embedded in Ocado Retail.
The combination of the qualities of Ocado and M&S will allow us to grow faster, add more jobs, and create more value, as we lead the channel shift to ecommerce in the UK. We are very excited by the many opportunities ahead."
Steve Rowe, Chief Executive Officer, M&S, said:
"I have always believed that M&S Food could and should be online. Combining the strength of our food offer with leading online and delivery capability is a compelling proposition to drive long-term growth.
Our investment in a fully aligned joint-venture with Ocado accelerates our Food strategy as it enables us to take our food online in an immediately profitable, scalable and sustainable way.
Combining the magic of M&S Food with Ocado's leadership in online technology allows us to transform UK online grocery shopping offering customers the broadest, most innovative and relevant range in UK food retail with award-winning service. Our partnership with Ocado will create shared value for our customers, colleagues, supplier partners and shareholders, operating with a common sense of purpose and values.
This is a transformational step forward in shaping the future of M&S and in becoming a truly digital first retailer with at least a third of the business online."