Floating is “too tough” for dotcoms, says Ocado founder

It’s been one year since Ocado floated on the London Stock Exchange, and Tim Steiner, the online food retailer’s chief executive, doesn’t seem happy with the move.

Steiner says that floating your business throws up barriers and simply doesn’t encourage businesses to grow.

The problem is that long-only investment institutions prefer to buy shares in steady low-growth businesses rather than higher-growth, high-risk companies, Steiner tells the Telegraph. This therefore puts tech companies, which often fall in the latter category, at a disadvantage.

Steiner adds that in the run-up of Ocado’s IPO, he felt muzzled about talking about the company’s future.

“One of the challenges you have as a business going through that process is you are quite tightly controlled in terms of what you can say, what you can’t say and when you can say it by the legal and regulatory process.

“So to some extent, both you and your advisers can find yourself in a bit of a boxing ring with your hands tied around your back. It is a little bit unfair when everyone else can speak out but you are told you are in this period and you are not allowed to say anything. It is a bit tough.”

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