M&S To Boost Online Capacity With Second Warehouse
Marks & Spencer will increase its online capacity by building a new automated online warehouse in its existing distribution centre in Bradford, northern England, it said on Monday.
M&S said the expansion would create 300 new jobs.
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the trend towards more digital shopping, with M&S's online sales growing 34% in the first half of its 2020-21 year.
New Online Warehouse
The Bradford site currently delivers both clothing and food to M&S stores. The new investment will utilise existing vacant space within the centre to create a new online warehouse for M&S.com.
The expansion means that by Christmas 2021 M&S will serve online customers from its Castle Donington warehouse in central England, from Bradford and through its stores which act as micro-fulfilment centres.
In March, the retailer announced that it launched 46 websites in new markets, expanding its online reach to over 100 countries.
The group said the expansion into countries from Argentina and Brazil to South Korea and Pakistan was part of its strategy to accelerate its online business.
When M&S published first-half results in November it reported a 75% increase in international e-commerce sales, underlining the shift in online spend throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We’re focused on turbocharging our online business both in the UK and internationally, and as part of this we see a real opportunity in extending the number of countries where we run an online channel further," said Paul Friston, M&S's international director.