Analysis: Can Richard Price transform M&S’ fashion fortunes?

Richard Price

As Marks & Spencer bids to put its apparel offer fully back in fashion with shoppers, it has wooed one of its former retail stars back to lead the offensive.

M&S last week named Richard Price, who rose to the role of menswear trading director before his departure in 2012 and currently runs Tesco’s F+F clothing business, as its new managing director of clothing and home.

The position has proved a poisoned chalice for a decade as apparel bosses have come and gone and like-for-likes have typically headed south.

The same year as Price left M&S, so did general merchandise supremo Kate Bostock. She was replaced by John Dixon, who departed in 2015. And Price succeeds Jill McDonald, who was ignominiously shown the door this summer, when chief executive Steve Rowe took charge on an interim basis.

One observer describes Price’s return as “the last throw of the dice” from M&S in its bid to reinvigorate its stuttering clothing business. But can Price pull off the Herculean challenge that has defeated his predecessors?

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