Online retailer Ozon posted a 115% increase in gross merchandise value in the first quarter of its financial year, including a 200% surge in April, as Russian consumers embraced e-commerce.
The retailer said that its GMV totalled RUB 31.6 billion including VAT (€400 million) in the quarter, while during the first three months of the year, it delivered a total of 13.4 million orders.
Ozon said that in March, the number of new customers using its service doubled on the previous year, and then doubled again in April.
The number of users of its Ozon Premium service increased by 20,000 across a three-week period in April, while it also reported a record take-up of its Ozon.Card service.
According to the retailer, grocery and FMCG services were the fastest-growing segment on the platform in the first quarter, due to increased numbers of shoppers self-isolating due to the coronavirus.
Sales in the grocery category rose 170% to RUB 6.1 billion (€78 million) in the quarter, with the number of orders rising 200% to 5.5 million.
In April, the group also reported significant growth in the more remote areas of Russia – for example, first quarter sales increased 179% in Siberia and the Far East, 250% in Krasnoyarsk, and 673% in the Nenets Autonomous Okrug.
It said that despite higher demand, the number of parcels delivered on time was 94% in the first quarter, and 93% in April alone.
'This was made possible by Ozon’s long-term focus on developing its infrastructure and creating a sound technological foundation for efficient logistics management,' the group said.
'A New Habit'
“While many people will be happy to return to offline shopping to the extent possible, millions of Russians have developed a new habit – they enjoy buying different types of products online and doing so more often," commented chief executive Alexander Shulgin.
"Our forecast of more than 100% growth this year remains in force. I believe that in addition to the range and the availability of different delivery channels, the most important driver for growth in 2020 will be our quality of service. It became a distinguishing factor during the period of self-isolation, and I believe that many customers will continue to choose shopping online on specific websites based on this particular factor.”
© 2020 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.