Morrisons supermarkets has announced a £241m deal to join forces with Ocado and enter the online home grocery delivery market by 2014.
The arrangement with Ocado – which also sells Waitrose products – will allow Morrisons to start home deliveries to customers by January 2014.
Which? shopping expert Matt Clear said: ‘We survey thousands of Which? members about their online supermarket shopping every year, and Ocado consistently comes out on top. If Ocado can provide the same level of service for Morrisons then this could be good news for Morrisons customers and for consumers in general.
Read the Which? review of supermarkets to find out who are the best and worst supermarkets in the UK.
Morrisons deliveries to start in January 2014
Online-only supermarket Ocado currently sell their own and Waitrose groceries and Ocado says that this will continue. Waitrose is studying the detail of the agreement to see whether their own arrangement with Ocado has been breached.
Working with Ocado to deliver groceries ordered online to UK homes will cost Morrisons £170m initially – this is to acquire Ocado’s customer fulfilment centre in Dordon, Warwickshire. A further £46m will be spent by Morrisons to expand Dordon and establish a new delivery network.
Morrisons also anticipates additional development costs of £25m in the first year, bringing the total to get their new venture up-and-running to £241m.
Ocado top Which? online supermarket survey
Morrisons was the highest-rated of the ‘big four’ supermarket chains in our survey of Which? members, just edging out Sainsbury’s. It was ranked fifth among supermarkets overall.
For online grocery shopping, Ocado was the highest-rated supermarket with a customer score of 81%, just ahead of Waitrose.