Marks & Spencer is a British retailer with over 800 stores in more than 30 countries around the world. It is the largest clothing retailer in the UK, aswell as being a food retailer. Most of it’s domestic stores sell both clothing ; food, and since the year 2000 Marks ; Spencer have started to expand into other ranges such as homewares, furniture ; technology.
Marks ; Spencer became the first British retailer to make a pre-tax profit of over £1 billion “BBC News online 1998” Though a few years later Marks ; Spencer were hit by the “credit crunch” which has had a dramatic effect on the company as they struggle in the current economical climate.
There are plenty of observers who will claim that Marks ; Spencer is dying, and I’m inclined to agree. I’m not suggesting that the retail monolith is going bust, or is about to be bought by Wal-Mart and rolled into one brand with Asda. It’s just that the old M&S is dying and a new Marks & Spencer is forming. The latest blow came when Marks & Spencer announced it would sever its cosy, 30-year-old supply agreement with its fourth largest supplier, William Baird. Marks & Spencer first started to buy direct from manufacturers in the Twenties, a rather radical initiative in those days, when wholesalers were taken for granted. Since then, Marks & Spencer has been a mainstay for the UK retail industry. Marks & Spencer’s has increasingly moved overseas in recent years, to take advantage of the higher margins offered.
In this report I am going to be looking at the Political, Economical, Sociological, Technological and Environmental factors that have affected Marks ; Spencer and how they have overcome their problems.