Mar 19, 2023

John Lewis considers plan to change staff-owned structure

John Lewis is considering a potential change to its employee-owned business structure, upending more than 70 years of tradition. The group, which also owns Waitrose, is currently fully owned by its staff, who receive a share in the profits. The Sunday Times, which first reported the move, said the firm hoped to raise up to £2bn. It said the firm's chairwoman Dame Sharon White was considering a potential plan to dilute the famous partnership structure in order to invest in better technology, data analysis and Waitrose's supply chain. If it did it would not amount to removing the mutual ownership structure altogether and that staff would retain majority control. John Lewis has worked with outside companies in the past: Ocado launched grocery deliveries for Waitrose and more recently it set up a joint venture to build residential properties with investment firm Abrdn.

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