M&S bosses warns landlords over loss-making stores

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M&S bosses warns landlords over loss-making stores
Last year, M&S revealed it would shut down 110 stores, comprising 85 full-line shops and 25 food stores.
// M&S warns landlords it will shut down loss-making stores
// Landlords now expect M&S to close down more than the 110 stores it has already earmarked as part of its turnaround scheme
// Landlords were reportedly given the warning by CEO Steve Rowe & chairman Archie Norman

Marks & Spencer landlords have been placed on high alert after the retailer’s bosses reportedly hinted that more stores than originally planned will shut down.

According to The Sunday Times, M&S chairman Archie Norman and chief executive Steve Rowe told property owners over a dinner event that it would close any under-performing sites across the UK.

The report indicated that landlords now expect M&S to close down more than the 110 stores it has already earmarked as part of its turnaround scheme.


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One of the main goals of retailer’s transformation plan is to downsize its UK portfolio of 1036 stores and increase online clothing sales.

M&S also invested £750 million into a joint venture with online grocer Ocado in a bid to make it food business available to customers online for the first time.

Last year, M&S revealed it would shut down 110 stores, comprising 85 full-line shops and 25 food stores.

However, Rowe conceded at the AGM in August that those plans were not final, leaving the door open for further closures.

Most of the 53 stores M&S has closed down since 2016 have been in secondary towns and cities.

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11 COMMENTS

  1. Retailers should stop blaming landlords for their failings. It is the business that has the issues, not the premises, which are just buildings. The building they agreed to rent at the rent they agreed.

      • True. But to the gentleman’s point: these were negotiated. They are contracts. How much responsibility does the retailer bear? If you entered into a contract with almost anyone, good luck in getting the terms changed. Also, large players like M&S are often anchors, therefore they get sweetheart deals. The real victims here will be the smaller specialty stores.

        (So…less name calling…)

  2. M&S have lost high street business ever since they abandoned stockrooms in store. Just in time deliveries from distribution warehouses are never in time. After replenishing a sales floor following a delivery, the best selling colours and sizes are sold out again often in minutes. Being told that these items can be ordered on line is no comfort to the high street shopper. Constantly underselling, and never knowing the full potential.

  3. Some of the stuff as fas as women’s clothes leave a lot to be desired. They should produce what women want not stuff we don’t! The sales just gone with hideous clothes was a case in point. They don’t listen either.

  4. I have overheard a conversation between staff, in a large m&s store,it was the lingerie department, they were saying that they had been told that their department had taken the lowest sales for that week. Which they agreed was the lack of stock, I had just been unable to purchase what I wanted could not find my size. Please M&S you should be experts in all aspects of shopkeeping after all these years, I can not imagine this country without marks and Spencer.

  5. They never cater for the shorter woman.I like a number of their dresses but far too long.Consider doing dresses /skirts in short regular and long.

  6. Need customer forums to inform buyers what we really want .I would love to shop at M and S and have a healthy budget but frankly find its clothing frumpy and poor quality and I am 62 !I keep looking but it is a triumph of hope over experience .

  7. M&S is such a useful place but the womenswear is just not producing what women want…they need a designer who knows what’s going on. I really don’t understand why they have been so far behind the other supermarkets in online groceries with delivery. They’re great for international and local variety, portions suitable for small families and decent parking conditions…..things you can’t find anywhere else.

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