British online supermarket and technology company Ocado has today reported an acceleration in retail sales growth in its latest quarter, helped by additional capacity from its fourth automated warehouse.
The third quarter results were the first since Ocado and Marks & Spencer completed their £1.5 billion joint venture deal in August to create Ocado Retail.
For the 13 weeks to September 1, its fiscal third quarter, Ocado Retail's revenue rose 11.4% to £386.3m.
That compares with Ocado's first half growth of 9.7% and guidance of 10-15% for the second half.
Average orders per week rose 12.1% to 314,000 as more slots became available, though average order size fell 0.8% to £105.42, reflecting a slightly higher frequency of purchase.
In February Ocado warned retail sales growth would be dented until it increased capacity elsewhere after a fire devastated its flagship robotic warehouse in Andover.
That extra capacity was secured through a deal with Morrisons, Britain's fourth biggest supermarket group, in May, giving Ocado sole use of its fourth, and newest, robotic warehouse in Erith, outside of London.
"These first set of results from the joint venture between Ocado Group and M&S show the resilience of Ocado following the Andover fire and the momentum the business now has," said Melanie Smith, Ocado Retail's CEO.
The Ocado Retail joint venture will provide M&S with a home-delivery service by September 2020.
Shares in Ocado have gained 48% over the last year.
While Ocado's retail business holds just a 1.4% share of Britain's grocery market, its warehouse technology has powered its valuation.
The group has technology deals with eight major retailers, including US group Kroger and France's Casino.