John Lewis has today announced an investment of £32million to fund an extensive refurbishment programme in four shops this year, including its flagship department store on London’s Oxford Street.
John Lewis High Wycombe, Kingston and Nottingham are also set to benefit in 2013, with a further £25 million earmarked for other, smaller investments across the retailer's 39 shop estate before 2014.
Andy Street, managing director of John Lewis said, “Investing in our shops is crucial to ensure we continue to provide powerful and compelling destinations for our customers to visit. These upgrades reinforce our commitment to the high street, where we believe it is essential to constantly innovate and evolve. We want our shops to stand as vibrant beacons of what successful bricks and mortar retailing can bring to our towns and cities, complementing a rapidly growing online business rather than being replaced by it.”
£8million will be spent on improvements at the flagship London shop on Oxford Street. Work will take place between May and October this year and will include a full upgrade of the lower ground floor creating a home dining, entertaining, and gifting emporium.
Simon Fowler, managing director of John Lewis Oxford Street, said, “The branch is the flagship shop for the John Lewis brand and operates in a unique competitive environment on Oxford Street. The multi-million pound overhaul of the lower ground floor is another example of our product range and shopping environment continually evolving to maintain our market-leading proposition.”
The biggest single investment of the year will see the £16million redevelopment of John Lewis High Wycombe. The plans will see 35,000 sq ft of back-office space converted to increase the shop’s selling area by one third and extend the product offer by introducing a full fashion, nursery and childrenswear offer as well as expanding the beauty and audio visual departments. The first phase of the makeover has started on the shop’s back-office space, with work on the selling floors beginning in early April and all work due for completion in October 2013.
John Lewis Kingston will begin a £7million refurbishment of its ground floor in May, completing in October this year. An additional 7,000 sq ft of ground floor selling space will be created primarily by infilling two wells above the Waitrose store in the shop's basement and further conversion of back of house space. The overhaul will transform and expand existing departments including beauty, fashion accessories and gifting which will modernise the shopping environment for customers and introduce a number of new brands to the shop.
John Lewis Nottingham will receive a £1 million makeover of its first and third floors which will see an extensive upgrade of the shop’s beauty department, including the introduction of new brands such as Bobbi Brown, Bare Minerals, Benefit, Origins and Aerin. The improvements will increase the selling space to over 8000 sq ft. The project is set for completion in May 2013.
All four shops will all remain open throughout the works and activity will be carefully managed to minimise any impact on customers.
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