By Denna Bowman
Online grocer Ocado has credited fitting winter tyres to its 700-strong fleet of delivery vehicles for helping boost sales during the run-up to Christmas.
Despite severe weather conditions the tyres, along with extra training for drivers, helped the company outperform market expectations.
The Hatfield-based firm posted gross sales of £50.9 million in the four weeks to December 26, up 26.7% on last year. Sales in the week before Christmas were £12.3 million, up 43.5% on last year.
In a bid to overcome the heavy snowfall and freezing temperatures, the group had equipped its delivery vehicles with winter tyres and reduced the number of delivery slots available to ensure orders could be met, which allowed it to meet more than 98% of orders made.
Chief financial officer Andrew Bracey said Ocado was able to continue this strong performance during the severe weather by “winter-ising” the fleet with snow tyres and by providing extra training to drivers.
According to the Sunday Times, only six vans had to be dragged out of the snow last month compared with 200 during the previous December’s heavy snowfall.