Marks & Spencer’s IT strategy may get a reprieve now that Stuart Rose has taken the helm at the company.

Following the prospect of a buyout by Arcadia boss Philip Green, the future of M&S’s more proactive IT projects has hung in the balance.

Green has a track record of having little patience for technology that does not yield immediate gains. Should Green win a bid to acquire the retailer, M&S’s forays into merchandise planning, self-checkout and RFID tracking could be locked down.

However, Rose is recognised as being a technophile. He sits on the board of retail solutions provider NSB as a non-executive director, alongside former Matalan chief Angus Monro.

‘I can’t imagine that a systems replacement is going to be high on the agenda for either of these men,’ said Kurt Salmon Associates principle Peter Wilmot.a

However, he acknowledged that M&S’s merchandise planning system from Alphameric, piloted only last year, will have a better chance of surviving under Rose.

‘Rose is a more scientific retailer and may be prepared to use tools like that,’ Wilmot said. ‘Green, by track record, has dealt with clothing for 30 years. He gets involved in the buying decisions, relying on his experience rather than any huge databases.’