Marks & Spencer Teams Up With True To Drive Digital Business
UK retailer Marks & Spencer is teaming up with True, a fund management firm that specialises in digital technologies, as it seeks to bolster its IT capabilities.
True’s ‘Live Network’ model brings together private equity companies, startup innovators, investors and leading industry partners, and M&S is hopeful that it can use this expertise to further its retail-specific tech needs.
Access To Innovations
“Our partnership with True will give us unparalleled access to the latest innovations and technologies that have the potential to transform the way we operate and run our business,” said Steve Rowe, M&S chief executive.
“As M&S seeks to become a Digital First retailer, we will be on the front foot thanks to True’s deep sector knowledge and the exposure they will give us to new enterprise-ready technologies which will benefit our customers and make us fit for the future.”
True’s aim is to “deliver positive commercial outcomes with clear and tangible ROI for our Partners,” according to Mike Tattersall, the company’s chief commercial officer.
“M&S exemplifies a business that has not only helped shape the British retail landscape, but understands the need to evolve - and the importance of innovation to achieve this. Through the True Live Network, we will support M&S in enhancing its operations and ensuring it’s a retail business that is strongly positioned to navigate a continuously changing landscape.”
Commenting on the move, Clive Black of Shore Capital Stockbrokers said, "Changing M&S’ culture has been at the forefront of most commentators solution list for the Group. Many lists have come and gone, however, as successive management failure has ultimately led to the emergence of what Chairman, Archie Norman, characterised as a ‘burning platform’ at the Group’s recent AGM.
"Dealing with the legacies of this business is a big and time consuming job. Accordingly, whilst not a game changer today, if cultural change is to be a serious component of this attempted turnaround then we are encouraged by recent announcements from Steve Rowe, CEO, & Co with respect to the ambition to be a ‘Digital First’ retailer in reality as opposed to rhetoric. As such whilst acorns perhaps, we welcome the ongoing announcements of tie-ups and partnerships with effective participants in the digital consumer world."
© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.