British retailer Marks & Spencer wants a strict restructuring: in the next four years, it wants to shut down 100 British stores (instead of 60). “We need to do this to safeguard the future”, it said.
The company had already announced a restructuring plan in 2016, which resulted in a near total shutdown of its stores abroad and another 60 in the United Kingdom. It now seems that it will have to go even further than that: 100 British stores will need to shut down. The process is already underway, with 14 having already shut down. The retailer will have shed a third of its British clothing and interior design stores in the United Kingdom by 2022. Its food stores have been left unharmed, but their opening rate will slow down.
According to operational director Sacha Berendji, the company needs another restructuring to realize future, sustainable growth. The manager says the store closures will bring consumers to visit nearby stores that have a more modern store experience. The cutbacks should also help the retailer’s online growth plans. Its 2017 profit slumped to 573 million pounds (down from 614 million in 2016). Its like-for-like turnover in its large fashion and interior design stores also dropped 1.1 %.