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M&S announces six more guest brands

Tom Bottomley
16 August 2021

Marks & Spencer has today announced the addition of six new clothing and footwear brands to M&S.com over the coming weeks including Albaray, Celtic & Co, Craghoppers, Fat Face, Frugi childrenswear and Jones Bootmaker as part of its "Brands at M&S" strategy as the retailer ramps up its business transformation.

"Brands at M&S" is already “driving frequency of shop” and is part of the MS2 division to curate a platform of brands that are relevant for the M&S customer, offering them more reasons to shop more frequently on M&S.com.

Each new brand will offer a curated range for the M&S customer that is complementary to the existing offer, and an instore trial is part of the omnichannel strategy.

"Brands at M&S" initially launched for M&S’s 22 million "Clothing & Home" customers in spring. with brands including Sloggi and Sosandar already available on the site, as well as a range of beauty brands that continues to expand with new brands such as Boucleme now live.

Over the summer a number of kidswear brands have also been added to the platform including Clarks to support the schoolwear offer, and kids’ stationery brand Smiggle.

Growing M&S.com as a credible platform to drive frequency of shop is an important part of reshaping M&S’s "Clothing & Home" business. Customer adoption of that model of shopping is accelerating, and in a recent customer survey 73% of M&S customers said they have purchased clothing and footwear brands from a retailer acting as a platform, so M&S is continuing to adapt to that trend.

The "Brands at M&S" team has grown to over 20 people in a few short months and is dedicated to reacting to the drivers behind the customer trend.

While "Brands at M&S" is predominantly an online offer, in addition to launching more brands M&S will also extend its Stratford in-store trial to include the store on Argyle Street in Glasgow, as well as Bluewater, Cheshire Oaks, Manchester, and the Metro Centre in Gateshead. 

Neil Harrison, Director of Brands at M&S, said: “With customers increasingly looking to shop on platforms, we have an exciting opportunity to leverage our infrastructure and digital-first Sparks loyalty scheme to grow ‘Brands at M&S’.

“We’re offering our time-pressured customers more choice with a curated group of value for money, contemporary, stylish brands with sustainability credentials – improving our online offer and making us more relevant, more often. We’re excited to be adding great new brands over the coming weeks, from Frugi to Fat Face, as well as new drops landing for existing brands.”

The latest launch of brands comes ahead of AW21 when M&S will be demonstrating to customers a reshaped product engine across core ranges as well as refreshed in-house brands Autograph, Goodmove (now available in every store) and Per Una – which this year celebrates its 20th anniversary.

In January M&S acquired the Jaeger brand for £6m. Its historical reputation for innovation in natural fibres, British sourcing and distinctive style provides a complementary addition to the M&S range. The first curated collection from the new team will launch later this year.

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