M&S to speed change plans as profit falls 21%

Marks & Spencer is to speed up turnaround plans.

That after the UK retailer reported a 21 percent fall in profits.

When the global virus crisis hit, the firm was in the middle of its latest attempt at reinvention.

It’s already seen more than a decade of failed revivals.

On Wednesday (May 20) it said its ‘never the same again’ program would learn lessons from the crisis.

The accelerated plan includes a renewed focus on online, through its partnership with Ocado.

M&S aims to make its food supply chain more efficient, revamp its clothing business, and speed up the reshaping of its store estate.

Chief executive Steve Rowe says the firm has to adapt, with the pandemic changing work and shopping practices for good.

The company expects the impact of the crisis to last through the financial year, with demand likely to be weak even after that.

In the year to March it made a pretax profit of 403 million pounds, or just over 490 million dollars.

M&S shares jumped over 8% following Wednesday's news.