Marks & Spencer will next month announce the closure of its flagship store on the Champs Elysées in Paris as part of CEO Steve Rowe’s cost cutting programme.
According to Bloomberg, which cites its source as a person “familiar to the matter”, Rowe will make the announcement when he updates investors on wider strategy on 8 November.
The closure of the store would mark the second time the British retailer has pulled back from France and reverses a decision made by Rowe’s predecessor Marc Bolland who made the opening of the Paris store one of his earliest priorities when he arrived in 2010.
As well as the Champs Elysées flagship Marks & Spencer has a number of convenience food stores in Paris
The last time M&S exited France was in 2001 when then CEO Luc van der Velde decided to close all 18 of the retailer’s stores in the country as part of a wider exit from continental Europe which resulted in 38 store closures. His successor Sir Stuart Rose later described the decision as “tragic”.
The closure of the Paris store comes on the back of further cost-cutting at Marks & Spencer, which has been struggling to reverse a decline in its clothing business, including the cutting of 525 jobs at its London headquarters.