M&S chief warns of pay cuts for around 7,000 in bid to boost sustainability


Marks & Spencer's boss has said the retail giant will face more "tough decisions" as he moves to shake up staff pay - with a view to cutting pay for around 7,000 workers - and grapple with tough high street trading.

Chief executive Steve Rowe branded the performance of its clothing and home arm "unacceptable" after last week reporting that like-for-like sales plummeted 8.9%.

Mr Rowe added that he is changing M&S's pay and pension scheme to make the firm more sustainable "in the long term".

The company plans to cut premium pay for Sundays, bank holidays and anti-social hours for close to 7,000 people, while 11,000 workers will be impacted by cuts to pension contributions.

The proposals will also see basic pay increased by 15% from next April to £8.50 an hour, benefiting 62,000 staff.

Speaking to shareholders at Wembley Stadium, he said: "I know that it is a big ask for me to stand here today with a new set of ideas for you trust me that things will be different this time."

He added: "We will have to take some tough decisions along the way."

Mr Rowe said the pay proposals will allow the chain to deliver "some of the highest wages in retail", while the pension changes will deliver "parity" to all employees through "a generous scheme".

He said that it was unfortunate that a small number of M&S staff will be affected by the pay plans, but said those workers will compensated for the first two years.

He added: "We will have further complex decisions to make as we go forward but they will always be taken to give M&S a long term approach."