Marks and Spencer issued ‘the only chance of survival’ as plan tackles Covid crisis
M&S has announced that it expects to incur between £ 42 million and £ 47million in Brexit-related costs for the current year, which would particularly affect its business in Ireland. Commenting on the impact of the UK-EU deal, CEO Steve Rowe said “it was not a free trade deal” but said the group remained determined to be present in Ireland. The 137-year-old company reported an 88% drop in full-year profits in April, with the COVID-19 pandemic playing a significant role, but said it was making progress on its recovery plan.
And the Channel 5 documentary “M&S Vs Waitrose: What’s the Best Value?” Detailed what this might focus on.
The narrator said last week: “With over 1,500 stores between them and each brand generating £ 6bn a year, Waitrose and M&S are street giants.
“But with the economic uncertainty caused by Brexit, and buyers now having more choices than ever before, they are facing one of the most difficult times in their history.
“Their only chance of survival is to attract more middle class customers.
“Cash-rich customers who like to have fun.”
Consumer writer Harry Wallop noted: “Both are closing stores, their glory, unstoppable profit growth is certainly no longer the case.
“These are tough times for Waitrose and M&S.”
And Adam Leyland, editor of The Grocer, said they are both “going after the same client” to make a difference.
The series went on to explain why Waitrose could emerge victorious.
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Last year, M&S announced plans to cut 950 jobs in an attempt to “dramatically accelerate the pace and ambition of its transformation plan.”
He said the move marked “an important step” for it to become a “stronger, lighter” business, but many felt it was long overdue.
This came two decades after the company – which has become adored for selling high-quality, made-in-Britain products under its ‘St Michael’ brand – made the unprecedented switch to overseas suppliers. .
M&S core stores now typically carry a selection of the company’s clothing, housewares and beauty lines and an M&S Foodhall.
But many stores are now stand-alone Foodhalls and in 2019 M&S launched five as part of the business transformation.
Tonight, Marks and Spencer will feature in a Channel 5 documentary: “M&S vs. Waitrose: What’s the Best Value?” Which will seek to examine the rivalry between supermarkets facing “difficult challenges”.