BHS sets sights on Primark and M&S in latest High Street battle

By John Glenday | Reporter

April 27, 2015 | 2 min read

BHS has reportedly vowed to take the fight for custom direct to the likes of Primark and M&S as the department store chain seeks to avoid being squeezed out at both the low and mid-market.

The new, more aggressive strategy is the brainchild of new BHS chief Darren Topp, who is keen to make his mark early by reclaiming ground lost to competition in recent years.

Speaking to The Times Topp said: “We recognise that there is a lot to do, but it is fixable. We have got stores in some fantastic locations and people who are prepared to go the extra mile. I’m not leading this business to close it down.”

BHS is seeking to regain its footing on the High Street following a turbulent period following its fire sale by Sir Phillip Green to Retail Acquisitions for a nominal £1.

Separate strands of its turnaround strategy will see the store outsource all its cafes and restaurants to catering group Compass with the chain also revealing plans to open 20 food stores over the summer following a successful trial run.

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BHS also harbours ambitions to grow its lucrative international franchises business, which generates £100m of annual sales, to 90 additional stores.

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