M&S to close 32 town centre stores no longer viable

M&S to close 32 town centre stores no longer viable

M&S to close 32 town centre stores no longer viable Image M&S Corporate

Leading British retailer M&S has announced that it is to close 32 of its town centre stores, saying that they are no longer viable and that the move is unavoidable.

According to eveningnews24, the retail giant has said that many of its urban locations have lost steam, with failed local and national government policymaking many of these locations unviable.

The group has also said that “increasing cost pressures and consumer uncertainty” have also played their part, with the group needing to move its stores to more accessible and more viable locations.

That change in policy will see the stores move out of town to retail parks where rents and council tax rates are lower, parking for customers is free and sites more accessible.

M&S’ latest business report says:”We are now developing a growing pipeline of store relocations, moving from old multi-floor buildings, often with challenged fabric and poor access and car parking, to modern, well-located sites wherever possible in the renewal format with omnichannel capability.

“Moving away from town centres is not our only focus, but we recognise that in an omnichannel world, ease of shopping and fast access is critical to competitiveness.

“The full-line store pipeline already has around 15 new stores planned over the next three years, including seven former Debenhams sites, and we expect this to build further. This will help enable a further 32 store closures.”

M&S has not yet revealed which of its 32 town centre stores will close, but when they do, they will potentially deal these sites a fatal blow as they are one of the last remaining “anchor tenants” so crucial to vibrant retail sites.

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Written by

Peter McLaren-Kennedy

Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com.