Online grocer Ocado reported retail sales increased 15.3% to £252m in its third quarter as its sales and orders increased.

Gross sales were ahead 17.3% to £272m in the 12 weeks to August 9.

Average orders per week increased 16.6% to 190,000 while average order size continued to slip, down 1.1% to £110.46.

There was no news on Ocado’s anticipated tie-up with an international grocer. The etailer plans to strike a similar deal abroad to the one it forged with Morrisons, in which Ocado provides the infrastructure for the supermarket chain’s online grocery offer.

In June Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner told Retail Week that the etailer was “in advanced talks with a number of parties” as it bids to sign its maiden overseas deal with a retailer in North America or Western Europe. However, he signalled a deal may not be done by the end of the year, as planned.

Steiner said: “We are pleased with the continued steady growth of our business in a retail environment that remains tough.

“We believe our commitment to improving what we offer to customers through innovation and our proprietary IP will support further growth. Notwithstanding the competitive nature of the marketplace, we expect to continue growing slightly ahead of the online grocery market.”