Blog: M&S's May Day celebration
Dean Best | 1 February 2010
And so, UK retail's favourite Dutchman will take the wheel at Marks and Spencer in May.
The news today (1 February) that Marc Bolland has agreed a release date with former employer Morrisons to join M&S enables both businesses to firmly look to the future.
Morrisons has Bolland's successor in place and M&S will be hoping the former Heineken executive can have a similar effect on its business as he had on its Bradford-based rival.
Bolland is likely to first address the media and the invest community in late May when M&S unveils its annual results, although retail watchers will most probably have to wait until later in the year to hear what the new boss has in store for the business.
A series of question marks hang over M&S, especially after its January trading update sent shares tumbling. Concerns remain over the impact M&S's value strategy is having on margins.
Nevertheless, there were no doubt smiles at M&S's London HQ at today's announcement, with the retailer expressing its "delight" that Bolland will be in the hot seat from 1 May.
And with staff at one UK M&S store facing proposals that could see them formally warned for not smiling at customers, perhaps the sight of Bolland in the weeks to come will bring some much-needed light relief to the shop floor.
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