January 7, 2009

Marks & Spencer to lay off 1,230

British retailer Marks & Spencer said it would trim 1,230 jobs and close 25 Simply Food outlets after posting declining sales for its holiday shopping season.

The job losses include 780 store positions and 450 staff positions at the company's main office, The Times said.

M&S Chairman Stuart Rose said the company was right to give customers a Christmas with two sales days that included discounts up to 20 percent on some items.

The company also said it would adjust early retirement benefits to trim expenses and cap some annual pay increases to 1 percent.

We are aware that the proposed changes set out above will be difficult for those members of staff impacted, but given that we expect challenging economic conditions to continue for at least the next 12 months we believe we are taking the right action, Rose said.

Rose said, adding that there would almost certainly be no more store closings, The Times said.