Ocado’s annual results and its mounting losses are heavily featured in this morning’s papers.
The Times leads with Ocado losing all the stock market gains it made in the pandemic after the company admitted that higher costs from building high-tech warehouses would knock its margins (The Times £)
Similarly The Mail writes that Ocado shares have tumbled to their lowest level since the start of the pandemic as the grocer-cum-tech company unveiled widening losses after pouring more cash into its smart platform and robot warehouse rollout. (The Daily Mail)
The FT notes that investors have now pushed Ocado shares to more than 50% below their pandemic peak after the online grocer warned that increased spending to fund international expansion would dent profits. (The Financial Times £)
Sky highlights the 13% share price drop on the results, which also showed expansion and higher wages for in-demand drivers adding to costs. (Sky News)
Labour shortages, in particular of HGV drivers, have held back growth at Ocado, writes The Guardian. But the online supermarket said it had managed to keep price rises lower than the 3.8% level of grocery price inflation reported last week. (The Guardian)
Ocado warns on profits over costly expansion plans, writes The Telegraph, noting the online grocer’s shares have dived as it warned of hit to bottom line from cost of building more robotic warehouses. “It has been selling its software and robots to traditional supermarkets across the world to help them sell groceries online and compete with Amazon.” (The Telegraph)
“Ocado still delivering disappointment,” writes The Times’ Tempus column. “Ocado may be the eternal jam tomorrow story. Another planned jump in capital expenditure this year will cause earnings at the grocery delivery specialist to be about £30m below market expectations, dashing anybody’s hopes for annual growth.” (The Times £)
Alan Jope faces his day of reckoning at Unilever. The consumer goods boss will have his work cut at this week’s results after the Glaxo debacle, it writes. “Not only does the Scotsman have to face a grilling for the first time on the GSK debacle, he also has to come up with a convincing enough Plan B to have a headstart on Nelson Peltz, the renowned activist investor waiting in the wings.” (The Times £)
The London Stock Exchange and Euronext Amsterdam scored a victory over Nasdaq yesterday when Just Eat Takeaway.com chose to drop its American listing in favour of the two European exchanges. (The Times £)
Primark will sell Greggs branded clothes and open the sausage roll maker’s biggest outlet at its Birmingham store (The Daily Mail). Retailer Primark has announced it will launch an exclusive clothing range with the bakery chain Greggs, sparking a mixed response on social media (The BBC).
Shoppers across the UK passing their local Primark were puzzled this weekend as they spotted Greggs steak bakes and vegan sausage rolls discreetly tucked into mannequins’ handbags and pockets in window displays. The secret has now been revealed as the two popular high street retailers announced a partnership on their social media channels. (The Guardian)
Starbucks has fired a number of workers leading efforts to organise a union in Tennessee, one of more than 50 such drives it is facing across the US. (The BBC)
The FT asks if Luckin Coffee – dubbed China’s Starbucks – can win back investors? The company unravelled in 2020 after it was revealed to have defrauded investors by faking more than $300mn of sales. (The Financial Times £)