Marks & Spencer has announced plans to create 3,400 new jobs across the UK as part of its store renovations. In the coming year, it intends to open eight “full-line” stores in cities such as Liverpool, Birmingham, and Leeds, stocking clothing, food, and homeware. Seven of the eight stores will be relocated, with five of them occupying former Debenhams locations.
As part of the company’s store renovations, 12 food halls will be opened. Once completed, the changes will result in a reduction in the number of traditional M&S stores as the company seeks to expand its grocery business. New Simply Food locations will open in Stockport, Barnsley, and Largs in North Ayrshire, Scotland. Five of the eight new “full-line” stores will be located in former Debenhams locations in Leeds White Rose, Liverpool ONE, Birmingham Bullring, Manchester Trafford, and Lakeside Thurrock shopping malls. A new shop will also open in Croydon’s Purley Way, while the other two are yet to be named.
Marks & Spencer announced a £480 million investment in its “store rotation program,” which will result in the creation of 3,400 jobs over the next three to five years. It confirmed that the jobs were new roles in addition to those that might be part of store relocations.
M&S chief executive Stuart Machin said the program was about “making sure we have the right stores, in the right place, with the right space”.