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Press Continue to Slam M&S CEO


mands article city amThe long-established British chain has much to be proud of; a highly successful food division, loyal and attentive staff, a real focus on future sustainability with the forward-thinking Plan A initiative and a Best of British range. Yet the press continue to report on financial doom in particular within the womenswear fashion arm of the company.

Earlier in the year Rowe announced that he would focus on turning around the womenswear department, no easy task in what is currently a very turbulent market. Today Tracey Boles from City A.M. (article featured right) reported: 

‘Marks & Spencer is expected to reveal another slide in clothing sales this week.

Analysts are predicting a slump of between four and six per cent in like- for-like sales of general merchandise in the first quarter. Dire weather and a shrinking fashion market are thought to be to blame.

A new bout of poor trading will be a blow to chief executive Steve Rowe who took the reins earlier this year with a pledge to turnaround the retailer’s clothing arm.’

The headline read: ‘M&S remains unfashionable as slide in clothing sales expected’.

While the figures speak for themselves these headlines simply do not reflect the full story, particularly when Rowe has only been at the helm for a mere three-months!

Jenny Holloway CEO of FashionCapital & Fashion Enter comments:  

Please give Steve Rowe a chance!  Sales of ladieswear may be down but this current collection has nothing to do with Steve Rowe being at the helm.  New strategic ways forward on buying are now in progress with product categories leading the way rather than by brand identity.  This will help curb duplication of silhouettes and confusing price structures. Give the man a break – he will succeed.”

JoJo Iles, editor of FashionCapital adds:

“The press viewings of the latest M&S ranges have been extremely positive. To me it seems rather unfair to blame Steve Rowe for the latest figures when the fashion lines in question would have been in production months before he came on board as the CEO. The press should give the man and his team a break and at least give them time to implement their planned changes before labeling the brand as ‘unfashionable’ it’s negative and unnecessary.”

Related articles:

Press Slam M&S Revamp Plans and Falling Profits

Bringing British Back

The ‘Factory Uncovered’ continues with M&S

My Fashion Life: Marks & Spencer Buyer


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