Sobey’s, Ocado partner on grocery delivery

Ocado delivery trucks. The company uses medium-and-heavy-duty trucks to delivery groceries in Europe. Photo provided by Ocado.

TORONTO, ON – Another grocery giant will be entering the home delivery space in Canada.

Sobey’s is partnering with grocery software and order fulfillment company Ocado Group to build a web shop and Customer Fulfilment Center (CFC) in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

The Sobey’s CFC will be a warehouse for grocery storage and a distribution center to coordinate final mile deliveries. It will take an estimated two years to build.

Michael Medline, president & CEO of Sobeys, says the company is excited to get into the e-commerce space as more and more customers move from shopping in-store to shopping from the comfort of their own homes.

This will be the first-time Ocado will be entering the Canadian market. The dedicated grocery company is based in the United Kingdom and works with retial companies across Europe.

Ocado says it hopes to partner with other Canadian grocery brands in the future.

Grocery deliveries are growing across the country with Loblaw Companies recently partnering with Instacart to bring goods to customers’ doors – often within two hours of ordering.

Unlike companies such as long-establish Grocery Gateway — which uses professional drivers in medium-duty delivery trucks — Instacart uses an Uber format, partnering independent contractors with orders through their app. The contractors shop for customers and use personal vehicles for deliveries.

Ocado uses medium- and heavy-duty delivery vehicles in its European markets, as well as innovative robot technology to fill orders. It says that technology will be making the jump across the pond with them.

There is no word yet on how many driver, warehouse, and other jobs Ocado will add to the GTA area.

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