Ocado’s chairman Stuart Rose offloads £1.7m in shares

Ocado’s chairman has offloaded nearly £1.7 million in shares in the online grocer as he continues a major sell-off of his equity.

Lord Stuart Rose raised £1.68 million by selling 150,000 Ocado shares this week, taking his total earnings from equity sales in the last year to nearly £10 million, according to The Telegraph. 

It follows another 150,000-share sale last June seeing Rose pocket £1.8 million, just a day after he sold a further 450,000 shares for £5.6 million.

The retail veteran and Conservative peer has been Ocado’s chairman since 2013, following numerous high-profile positions at high street stalwarts including M&S, Arcadia, Argos and Booker.

This comes after Ocado revealed losses around £80 million higher than analysts’ expectations this month, despite group sales rising 9.9 per cent to £1.76 billion.

READ MORE: £59m payout for Ocado’s boss Tim Steiner despite company’s £214m loss

Ocado posted a pre-tax loss of £214 million for the year to December 1 2019, significantly more than the £134 million loss analysts had expected.

Despite group sales rising 9.9 per cent to £1.76 billion, Ocado’s EBITDA dropped a whopping 27.2 per cent to £43.3 million.

It attributed this loss to a number of factors including the continued impact of the fire that ravaged its Andover automated warehouse last year, on which it is still awaiting pull payment of its insurance claim

Elsewhere its new joint venture with Marks & Spencer, which will see the retailer’s food sold online for the first time in history when it goes live in September, has made it necessary to enforce new accounting standards which also affected its earnings performance.

Despite the losses, the company’s chief executive Tim Steiner and another four top executives will receive a combined payout of £88 million thanks to a five-year incentive scheme which grants them the maximum possible amount as Ocado’s share price has risen.

For the year to December 1 2019 Steiner will receive £58.9 million, marking one of the largest sums given to any FTSE 100 boss.

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