John Lewis’s losses are expected to narrow despite the triple blow

John Lewis’s losses are expected to narrow despite the triple blow

Vote of confidence: Chairwoman Sharon White

Vote of confidence: Chairwoman Sharon White

John Lewis is expected to report another loss this week as new chief executive Nish Kankiwala reports his first results since taking over at the struggling retailer.

Britain’s largest employee-run company, which includes John Lewis department stores and grocer Waitrose, has been hit hard by a triple whammy from the pandemic, rampant inflation and the falling cost of living. Kankiwala is expected to report narrower losses in the six months to July, compared with the £99 million shortfall recorded in the same period last year.

He is likely to point out that it is not unusual for John Lewis to make a loss in the first half of the year – it has done so in three of the last four years – as trading is geared towards the important Christmas period. However, he is expected to be very cautious about the trade outlook.

They are the first figures to be published since leader Dame Sharon White was given a vote of confidence in May – when she won the support of the Partnership Council to continue to lead the group.

John Lewis posted losses of £234 million last year and told its 74,000 employees, known as partners, in March that they would not receive their annual bonus.

The mutual, which has limited ability to raise money, is also burdened by a £1.7bn debt pile, while its pension fund recently posted a £69m deficit. This followed reports earlier this year that the company might water down the partnership to attract new investors.

But in a recent interview with The Mail on Sunday, Kankiwala, the company’s first chief executive, said he was “very determined” to maintain the mutual status.

“In my heart of hearts, I believe in a business model that is about commercial success, but is also sustainable in the long term and where you share the rewards with everyone in the company,” he said. “I really feel like the partnership model is better.”

Drew Weisholtz

Drew Weisholtz is a Worldtimetodays U.S. News Reporter based in Canada. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Drew Weisholtz joined Worldtimetodays in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

Related Articles

Back to top button