“The lengthy and complex export procedures in place since the UK’s exit from the European Union severely limit the UK’s supply of fresh and chilled produce to Europe and continue to affect product availability to consumers and consumer profitability. Our business in France,” the group advances in a statement.
As a result, the multinational retailer decided that the partnership with SFH, one of its partners in France, “will end, which will result in the closure of 11 franchise stores by the end of the year”, primarily located in Paris.
However, the nine Marks & Spencer stores located in France in partnership with Lagardere Travel Retail – located at airports, train stations or metros – will remain open and “operating normally”.
“Marks & Spencer has a long history of serving its customers in France, and this is not a decision that neither we nor our partner SFH have taken lightly,” says Marks & Spencer International Director Paul Friston.
“However – he adds – under the current circumstances, all the complexity that the supply chain is assuming now, with the UK leaving the EU, makes it nearly impossible for us to be able to deliver fresh and chilled produce to customers, while maintaining the expected high quality standards. resulting in a continuing impact on our business performance.”
As for Marks & Spencer in France, which mainly sells clothing and household products, it has not been affected by the problems arising from Brexit, the group says.
The British chain had already announced in April that it was removing all fresh produce from its stores in the Czech Republic, to focus on frozen products and those that can be stored at room temperature.
The group, which had been in business for a long time, announced at the end of August an increase in sales of food and apparel products, which it interpreted as “a clear confirmation of the beneficial effects” of a restructuring plan launched more than a year ago in the wake of the pandemic.
As part of this plan, Marks & Spencer closed stores, announced 7,000 job cuts and invested in online sales, in order to compensate for the decline in customers and to adapt to new consumption patterns.
“Writer. Analyst. Avid travel maven. Devoted twitter guru. Unapologetic pop culture expert. General zombie enthusiast.”