M&S mulls HQ move, could downsize London offices
London may no longer be the nerve centre for M&S. The UK retail giant is considering moving its head office outside the capital, or radically downsizing operations there.
The company has been based in Paddington since the early 2000s after decades spent in and around Baker Street but M&S chief executive Stuart Machin questioned the need for big central London offices at this week’s investor day.
During a presentation, he cited changing, flexible working patterns and greater cost efficiencies as justification for a potential move out of central London.
Machin said: “I do think, over the next few years, there’s an opportunity to work quite differently. In [our head office], our lease will run out in FY28 and I don’t see us needing a large office like this in central London.
“We’ve got a chance over the next few years to plan for that, to have smaller hubs around the country and to do that in the most cost-efficient way, but also to do it where we can attract the best talent from across the whole of the UK.”
Machin said that in M&S’s store support centres, of which Paddington is one, “we’re really passionate about our flexible working” and there was a chance to remove complexity and hierarchy. “We want to be faster and quicker,” he said.
M&S’s London HQ covers 11 storeys and 237,800 sq ft.
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