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More capital expenditure required to facilitate online grocer’s overseas expansion

Online grocer-to-e-commerce tech licensor Ocado (OCDO) has bagged an impressive fourth deal with an international retailer, but it faces hefty development costs and isn’t forecast to return to pre-tax profit until the financial year to November 2020.

Based on broker Peel Hunt’s estimates, Ocado’s adjusted loss before tax should widen from £300,000 to £9.9m in the current financial year, narrow to £1.6m in fiscal 2019 before a swing back into the black to the tune of £16.8m in 2020.

Building on deals to use its Ocado Smart Platform (OSP) inked with France’s Groupe Casino and Canada’s Sobeys, as well as CEO Tim Steiner’s long-promised first overseas deal with a mystery regional European retailer, Ocado’s latest deal (2 May) has been struck with ICA, Sweden’s leading grocery retailer with around 1,300 stores, £9bn of revenue and a 36% share of the Swedish market.

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