Jobs hope from new Ocado hub

Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner.
Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner.
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Around 200 new jobs could be created in Sheffield by the opening of a new delivery depot for online supermarket Ocado, it was revealed today.

The company has said ‘nothing is yet confirmed’ for the site but added there are plans in place for a new facility in the city to open later this year.

A spokesman for the company said the new facility would essentially act as a smaller ‘spoke’ site in comparison to its major distribution centres.

The depot would be used to break down bulk orders into van loads before they are delivered out to customers.

The move is part of the company’s ongoing expansion plans.

The spokesman said: “Although nothing is yet confirmed, in line with our comments earlier in the year about expanding our spoke capacity, we are planning to open a spoke in Sheffield later this year, and when fully operating circa 200 people may be employed at the site.”

Ocado has already started advertising for posts at a new site in Chambers Lane, which is the expected location of the potential new depot.

The online retailer has been running since 2000 and uses centralised distribution where orders are dealt with at major distribution centres before either being sent out via delivery vans or transported by lorry to regional depots before being delivered to customers.

Last year Ocado agreed a licensing partnership with Morrisons, which allowed the supermarket chain to use the online retailer’s technology and software in order to create its own internet shopping service.

Ocado now delivers more than 36,000 product lines, including goods from Waitrose.

In February, Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner said the company was ‘investing in growth’ following pre-tax losses of £12.5 million being announced.

The company put down the loss to increases in distribution and administration costs, as part of its expansion strategy.