John Lewis pushes button on rebrand

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The John Lewis Partnership has officially launched its rebrand as the group looks to boost its fortunes during a difficult period for the high street.

It will see the John Lewis department store chain and supermarket Waitrose dubbed John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners.

While it will be fully rolled out over the next five years, the new branding was unveiled at John Lewis’s flagship Oxford Street store, as well as Waitrose in Edgware Road and Clerkenwell and on its websites.

The company said it had made the changes to put its 83,000 staff, known internally as partners, “at the heart” of the business.

Paula Nickolds, John Lewis & Partners managing director, said: “Our Partnership business model and the inherent strength of our partners really sets us apart.

“That’s why the change to our visual identity this week puts partners back at the heart of everything we do. This move not only reflects the business we have become but more importantly, the business we want to be.”

To support the launch, the firm is embarking on its first joint John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners national marketing campaign, which includes a new TV and cinema advert.

In June, John Lewis warned that its half-year profits will be “close to zero”, while profits for the full year will come in “substantially” lower than last year, raising alarm over the high street stalwart’s trading.

It bemoaned “market uncertainty” and cited significant extra costs at the partnership as a result of “greater IT investment”, which will be a driver of the profit decline.

To strengthen the company’s balance sheet, the board is also looking to save around £500 million over the next three years.

This year has been torrid for high street retailers, with department stores showing some of the most significant signs of financial distress.

House of Fraser collapsed into administration last month and Debenhams has issued a string of profit warnings.

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