Marks & Spencer (M&S) are expected to accelerate store closures after succumbing to the pressures of cost and sales which led to plunge in the first half profits. This also underlined the struggle to regain the approval of the British shoppers.
M&S, biggest clothing retailer in Britain, also announced that it would speed up the downsizing and relocation of other stores – with respect to the five year plan for turning around the fortunes of the company by Chief Executive Steve Rowe.
And while the company is still thinking to expand its food business, M&S are expected to slow down the launchings of its exclusive ‘Simply Food’ outlets. Rowe also explained its food costs are needed to be more competent in the tough market, while both availability and ranges are required to improve.
This plan is the newest one in a long list of attempts to turnaround by one of the biggest names in the retail sector of UK which has lagged behind the rivals from Zara and H&M to e-commerce site ASOS, whose quick-change fashions have attracted more young shoppers.
Rowe, a lifelong M&S person who became the CEO of the company in April 2016, denied that these current changes were an immediate result of joining of Archie Norman, a retail veteran as chairman in September. Rowe said these decisions were based on the financial modelling and data gathered. He also said that M&S had not lost as many consumer as projected after closing the stores, making the whole process quicker and upcoming closure more viable.