Mar 7, 2019

What's making life hard for John Lewis?

The John Lewis Partnership has announced a 45% drop in annual profit for 2018 and said its workers, who also own the firm, will only get a 3% bonus, down from 5% a year earlier. Ms Berg says John Lewis "Has been more agile to adapt to these changes" because of its ownership structure. "Clearly John Lewis is not immune to the trading challenges currently faced by retailers, which is a general reining-in of consumer spending," says Springboard's Diane Wehrle. For John Lewis this isn't the existential threat it has proved for retailers as diverse as LK Bennett, Hardy Amies, Patisserie Valerie, Maplin or Toys 'R' Us. "You have to judge these companies against their peers," he says. At the same time, John Lewis has had to invest in IT, as many other retailers have, to meet customer demand, says Ms Wehrle.

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