M&S to spend £480 million on new store strategy

Marks and Spencer (M&S) will invest £480 million into its stores to make them ‘bigger and better’, creating 3,400 jobs in the process.

The retailer will open around 20 new stores in the next financial year, with five of them opening at former Debenhams sites.

M&S said the store rotation programme will result in fewer stores, which will be in locations that are more convenient for customers with amenities such as bigger food halls and free parking. The programme will take the number of stores from 247 to 180 and open over 100 food sites.

The company said this strategy had already paid off in Chesterfield, where sales soared by 103 per cent after one of its stores was relocated.

Commenting on the news Stuart Machin, chief executive of M&S, said: “The out performance of our recently relocated and renewed stores, give us the confidence to go faster in our plan.”

He added: “Our investment in stores not only delivers a better experience for customers and colleagues, it boosts local communities with new job creation and will help us deliver a more sustainable estate in every sense.”

M&S recently announced that sales had jumped seven per cent over the recent festive period compared to the previous year. M&S Food reached its highest ever recorded market share, while sales in its clothing and home department rose almost nine percent, resulting in its highest market share in seven years.

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