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Pre-tax profits plummet at M&S

Pre-tax profits at Marks & Spencer tumbled by 62% to £66.8m in the year to March 31, which the retailer attributed to one-off costs relating to its store-closure programme.

M&S has been hit by £321.1m in costs as it seeks to close 100 stores over the next four years in a bid to downsize its UK store portfolio and move more of its business online.

Pre-tax profits before one-off items fell by 5.4% to £580.9m for the same period, while revenue edged up 0.7% to £10.7bn. Clothing sales at M&S’s clothing arm fell by 1.9%.

CEO Steve Rowe said: ”At our half-year results in November I outlined the need for accelerated change at M&S. The first phase of our transformation plan, restoring the basics, is now well under way and the actions taken have increased the velocity of change running through our business. These changes come with short term costs which are reflected in today’s results.

“There are a number of structural issues to address and we are taking steps towards fixing these. The new organisation will largely be in place by July and the team is now tackling transforming our culture to make M&S a faster, lower cost, more commercial, more digital business. This is vital as we start to leverage the strength of the M&S brand and values across a family of businesses to deliver sustainable, profitable growth in three to five years.”

M&S is working on a five-year transformation plan under which the retailer will create fewer, but better, clothing and home stores.

Readers' comments (3)

  • If Amazon accelerate their food offering to compete with Marks, it will be carnage.

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  • M&S should have woken up to the need for re-alignment of the business strategy stores vs Online digital 3 years ago. Getting back to respectable profit levels will be a huge mountain to climb. Good luck!

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  • I agree a lot at M&S needs to change-like focussing on their core customer and not trying to be all things to all people but the bottom line is they are still making profit. Sit back and take it in-MAKING PROFIT.
    Plenty aren't.

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