The Bradford supermarket chain said sales on its Morrisons.com site had doubled to £ 1 billion on an annualized basis.
It is introducing a withdrawal and withdrawal service in 280 stores by mid-June, doubling its activity with the fast delivery service of Amazon Prime and selling tens of thousands of boxes of prepared food per week, delivered by DPD mail.
Morrisons has also implemented a telesales service so that elderly and vulnerable buyers who do not have access to the Internet can order home deliveries at a local store. The company said it estimated it had tripled its total number of delivery slots in all initiatives, with sales via Amazon now accounting for nearly 1% of group sales per week.
David Potts, the chief executive, said that Morrisons phone service in particular provides a lifeline to vulnerable buyers who isolate themselves in their homes. “We have heard so many stories, especially from the elderly and vulnerable. Some have said they do not know where their next meal will come from, “he said.
The comments came after consumer and disability rights groups called on the government to better coordinate food deliveries to vulnerable people during the foreclosure, saying many had struggled to gain access.
Potts said Morrisons had worked well with the government and Public Health England, but admitted that adjusting to the surge in demand for home deliveries had been “difficult for everyone.”
Morrisons home shopping expansion comes after sales in established stores increased by nearly 6% in the three months ending May 10, including a 10% jump in the two last weeks of the period.
But Morrisons said he was continuing to delay a decision on a planned special dividend of £ 100 million for shareholders because it had “minimal certainty or visibility into earnings.” Costs – including delivery services, protection kit and staff bonuses – are expected to be around £ 230 million, in line with the savings expected on commercial rates from the government’s retail support program.
The company said sales prospects were also uncertain in a volatile environment that could change quickly depending on the pandemic.
A nearly 40% drop in fuel sales and the closure of in-store cafes will also affect sales and profits.
Potts said Morrisons had hired an additional 25,000 employees to meet demand in stores and online as well as to cover higher than usual absences, which peaked at 20,000. He said more than 200 members personnel had tested positive for coronavirus.
Potts said that all staff who wished them had received free face masks or visors and also wanted to sell the protection to buyers.
The prospect of selling protective gear in grocery stores marks a change in the tenor of British life, as the government changed its guidelines to suggest people wear face coverings in closed places where it is difficult to stand two meters from others, such as on public transport or in some shops.