John Lewis Partnership Reports £78 Million Loss and Announces Cost Savings Target

The John Lewis Partnership has reported a loss of £78 million before exceptional items for the year to January 28, a stark reversal from the £181 million profit the year earlier.[0] The retail giant attributed the slump to inflationary pressures and product supply challenges, such as a major fire at their Brinklow warehouse that hit availability at Waitrose in the summer.[1]

The group, which runs the department store chain and the Waitrose supermarket arm, said it is now looking to triple its cost savings target to around £900 million by January 2026, including an extra £236 million from further “simplification”.[2] Chairwoman Dame Sharon White told staff in a letter that the mantra for the year is “cost out, margins up and customer focus”, and apologised for the lack of a bonus payment after a “tough set of results”.[3]

White also said that the need to become more efficient and productive will have an impact on the number of partners, leading to possible job cuts.[2] To help tackle the losses, the group drafted in its first chief executive, Nish Kankiwala, this week.[4] Mr. Kankiwala has previously been in high-ranking positions at Hovis, BurgerKing,[5]

Josh Holmes, senior consultant at Retail Economics, said: “These results are worse than expected, with both Waitrose and John Lewis seeing profits retrench as inflation sends costs spiraling.”[1] The John Lewis Partnership is also offering its financial assistance fund, worth £800,000, to help with travel, childcare and living costs for staff.

0. “John Lewis Partnership insists transformation plan ‘on track' despite £234m loss” Marketing Week, 16 Mar. 2023,

1. “John Lewis Partnership bonus axed as losses balloon” This is Money, 16 Mar. 2023,

2. “John Lewis warns on jobs as staff lose bonus, profits slump” ShareCast, 16 Mar. 2023,–12695264.html

3. “John Lewis warns of job cuts as it cancels staff bonus” The Independent, 16 Mar. 2023,

4. “John Lewis staff miss out on bonus for second time in 70 years” upday Polska, 16 Mar. 2023,

5. “No staff bonus at John Lewis as partnership plunges to hefty losses” Evening Standard, 16 Mar. 2023,

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