Ocado is eyeing franchise and joint venture possibilities in an attempt to take the online grocery business international in 2009.

Co-founder Jason Gissing said: “We've built a system that is complex in terms of logistics and IT and it has taken us the best part of a decade to perfect. We now want to take it international.” He revealed the US and continental Europe are under consideration.

Ocado reported a record Christmas. Year-on-year sales for the four weeks to January 3 rose 25 per cent. During the Christmas week sales soared 97 per cent.

Gissing said food is a resilient sector and while trade slowed towards the end of the year, when the banking crisis battered consumer sentiment, it picked up again and remained strong into the first week of January.