Today’s news in brief-1/3/24

The forthcoming £90m Oxford Street Programme is poised to generate up to £2.8bn in additional sales for London’s West End between 2027 and 2033, as indicated by the New West End Company. This initiative, supported by both public and private investments, aims to revamp Oxford Street’s public spaces, infrastructure, and commercial offerings. The transformation aligns with evolving consumer preferences, particularly in food and beverage (F&B) and leisure sectors, driving heightened demand from operators.

Stuart Hill, chief operating officer of Matches Fashion, is departing to assume the position of CEO at DHL UK. His tenure at Matches saw him instrumental in logistics, having held pivotal roles at Farfetch, John Lewis, and Asos. Hill’s move comes following Matches’ acquisition by Frasers, amidst financial challenges for the business. In his new role, he aims to spearhead DHL UK’s growth and oversee the establishment of a second hub in Coventry. Hill’s departure signifies a shift in leadership for Matches and underscores the dynamic nature of the retail sector.

Mohsin Issa, co-owner of Asda, has announced plans to step back from day-to-day operations after implementing reforms to rejuvenate the supermarket chain. Despite facing challenges such as strikes and debt concerns, Issa remains committed to Asda’s long-term success. He dismisses speculations of discord within the management and emphasises ongoing investments to enhance market share and sustainability.

Sainsbury’s unveils plans to reduce its workforce by approximately 1,500 roles as part of its ‘Save and Invest to Win’ program. These changes aim to streamline operations, optimise support structures, and bolster efficiency across various departments. CEO Simon Roberts emphasises the strategic imperative of these measures in aligning with the company’s growth strategy.


The Body Shop is set to close 75 stores in the UK, resulting in the loss of 489 jobs, as part of its restructuring efforts overseen by administrators at FRP Advisory. However, 116 stores will remain operational. FRP Advisory aims to stabilise the business and secure its long-term future through these measures. Last month, administrators announced plans to close nearly half of the retailer’s stores, citing years of unprofitability. Immediate closures include seven stores across various locations in London, Warwickshire, Kent, and Bristol.

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