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Marks & Spencer UK proposes axing 351 management jobs

Marks & Spencer UK reportedly plans to axe more than 300 jobs across the UK as it continues its restructure to counter falling sales.

The Guardian has reported seeing documents proposing 351 job cuts, almost all of them in management roles, including operations, section managers and “visual managers”.

Marks & Spencer, which is flourishing in Asia under a franchise agreement with Middle Eastern-based Al Futtaim, has seen sales fall by 7.5 per cent in its home market over the last two years, which has reduced store profitability. That decline is behind a plan announced in May to close 100 stores by 2022.

Earlier this month, chairman Archie Norman and CEO Steve Rowe warned there may be further closures, with Norman describing the scale of the Marks & Spencer store network as “a drag” on performance.

Rowe is eyeing savings of £350 million by 2021, a target likely to lead to more redundancies. However to date, the company says 86 per cent of staff affected by the closure of stores so far have been relocated to new positions within the company.

Marks & Spencer’s pre-tax profit nin the year to March 31 fell 62.1 per cent to £66.8 million, largely the result of £321.1 million in costs associated with store closures.

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