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AO boosts warehousing and driver numbers

AO has opened 300,000 st ft of new warehousing and recruited 500 new drivers for peak period demand, the company has reported.

Revealing its interim results it said that five new outbases opened across the UK and Germany during the period, expanding warehousing functionality with more than 300,000 sq ft of additional space.

The company also recruited around 500 new drivers to enable it to meet peak period demand. It said that this move brought its fleet up to strength and helped to ease the previously reported shortage of drivers.

AO also said it had grown its third party logistics revenues during the period. They were up by 38.5% with three new contracts in Germany.

However the company admitted that its second half was continuing to see supply chain challenges, including poor availability in certain categories, particularly in newer products where the company has less scale, experience and leverage. AO said that shipping costs, material input prices and consumer price inflation also remain challenging and has downgraded its results expectations as a result.

However AO’s founder and chief executive John Roberts, said he was confident of the future: “Our results over this period have inevitably been affected by the constraints and uncertainty seen across our industry. We’ve materially cemented the progress of last year, with a step change in scale and consumer behaviour – and the fundamentals of the business are in place for sustained growth.”

And he said that this was proved by repeat customers buying more frequently. “We’re seeing more customers making repeat purchases more frequently across categories. Once they experience the AO Way, they keep coming back. Our outstanding operational capabilities are also being recognised by more and more companies who are now outsourcing their delivery services to us.”

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  • AO