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M&S to close Brussels branch

© Belga
Is this the end of M&S in Belgium?
© Belga

The British retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) made known today that it intends to close its only Belgian branch. The store which is situated in Avenue de la Toison d’Or in Brussels, has hardly been open for a year and a half.

The company’s explanation in a brief communiqué is, “This proposal was drawn up following comprehensive analysis of the 466 international M&S shops, with the aim of unleashing a clearer vision of their current activities and profitable aspects.”

M&S had reopened a shop in Belgium in May 2015, having left in 2011 following a policy of a sharper focus on England.

The opening of this Brussels 5,000 metres-square Brussels shop both attracted the crowds and unrolled in the presence of the Belgian actress Marie Gillain, the British Ambassador in Belgium, Alison Rose, and the then CEO of M&S, Marc Bolland.

The closure of the brand’s only British shop in Belgium is part of a larger business plan, which will see M&S close shops in ten countries, as well as points of sale in the United Kingdom.

In total, the brand announced on Tuesday the closure of around 100 shops worldwide, according to AFP (Agence France-Presse).

Christopher Vincent
The Brussels Times