Ocado is in the process of appointing bankers ahead of a proposed stock market flotation this summer, according to reports in the financial press.
The move would see the online grocer valued at £1 billion, according to the Telegraph, putting it in the FTSE 250 — but an actual flotation will depend on the state of the stock market:
Any listing will depend on market conditions and, if stock market valuations plummet over the next few months the flotation is likely to be pulled.
Last month, the company reported a 30pc rise in underlying sales during December. However, the company is yet to make a profit at the pre-tax level.
Last year the company tabled a pre-tax loss of £32.6m, compared with a pre-tax loss of £37.7 in 2008, according to Companies House filings.
However, chairman Michael Grade said that the retailer made its first ever profit — £483,000 on sales of £338.4m — at the earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) level.