John Lewis has announced it will launch a new range of cheaper products to appeal to more younger families and price conscious customers, as it plans to reopen its UK stores on Monday 12 April.
The ANYDAY range, aimed at "modernising" the company, will sell products with prices ranging from £1.50 ($2) face cloths to a £499 three-seater sofa.
John Lewis, which runs as a partnership, hopes widening its price range will help grow its customer base as shoppers look for "value and quality" following the economic impact COVID crisis.
But, executive director, Pippa Wicks said the company hopes to particularly appeal to "young families" and "slightly older, post-family customers."
She added that the range had been "specifically designed around" how its customers "live today."
"Whatever they need, we will have a product which suits their budget, from space-saving products, cost-effective baby clothes and affordable technology to portable pieces renters can take with them when they move," Wicks said.
On average, prices in the new range will be 20% lower than its current own brand range, although this will be more in some categories.
The new range, available from Monday, will feature 2,400 products, It will initially focus on homeware, technology, baby care and baby clothing. Customers can also purchase the range online on their website.
It has a wide-ranging baby care and baby clothing collection, including car seats starting at £60. The range fills a price gap occupied by Mothercare before it collapsed.
"We realised there were concerns that we were not always good value for money, so this is intended to directly address that," Wicks told the PA news agency.
She added that, John Lewis was seeking "to appeal to our existing customers with a broader range of pricing" but also think this the new range will be attractive to new customers as well.
“We want to challenge value perceptions of John Lewis and attract a broader group of shoppers who want to combine style and value,” she said.
The ANYDAY range will also be sold at John Lewis's sister supermarket chain Waitrose and smaller format stores currently being trialled by the group.
John Lewis expects the range to account for about a fifth of its sales over time. It will expand into new categories with a further 1,000 products in the autumn.
It comes after the store announced it would permanently shut eight of its stores, despite the economy slowly reopening and lockdown restrictions easing, putting 1,465 jobs at risk.
Earlier in March, the retailer posted a record loss of £517m for 2020.
The company has been struggling like many other retailers amid the coronavirus pandemic.
In August last year, the company's CEO Dame Sharon White, said that she would replace it with “fair value for all,” amid radical plans to change the business to put it on competitive price footing with its competitors.
White also hinted at a "digital first" appraoch as the coronavirus pandemic as lockdowns have shifted the way people shop and boosted online sales.
In 2020, up to 60% to 70% of the department store's sales were being made online. In 2019 online sales were at 40%, with the increase attributed to the coronavirus lockdown.
with the brand’s slogan promising to refund the difference if customers purchased one of its products but found it cheaper elsewhere within 28 days — but the policy didn’t match prices with online-only retailers.
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