Jan 4, 2016
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M&S's loyalty card boss leaves firm shortly after launch

Jan 4, 2016

British retailer Marks & Spencer has parted company with the head of a loyalty scheme that it launched with great fanfare in October.

Photo: AFP

The clothing and food retailer confirmed the departure of Suzanna Broer, who had the title of director of customer insight and loyalty. It declined to comment on a report in The Sunday Times that she had been dismissed in November for allegedly using racist language at work.

"We would never comment on individual cases," said an M&S spokesman.

He added in a statement: "M&S does not tolerate any form of discrimination in the workplace. We will always take all the necessary steps to protect our employees from discrimination of any kind."

Broer did not respond to an attempt by Reuters to reach her for comment.

Broer had presented "Sparks", M&S's new members club and card scheme, to reporters in October and had been seen as a rising star at the business.

News of her departure comes ahead of M&S's Christmas trading update on Thursday.

Analysts are forecasting third quarter sales of general merchandise, which consists of clothing, footwear and homewares, will be down by up to 5.5 percent year-on-year at stores open over a year.

A second poor Christmas in a row is expected to put the position of Chief Executive Marc Bolland into question after five years in the job.

Shares in M&S have fallen 12.3 percent over the last month on Christmas trading concerns.

They were down 2.4 percent at 442 pence at 0937 GMT, valuing the business at 7.2 billion pounds.


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