Everyone knows Marc Bolland is a bit of a charmer. The M&S chief has been under pressure all year with disappointing clothes sales and a finance chief who decided every little really did help and hopped over to Tesco. But yesterday, at the retailer’s half-year results event, the suave Dutchman came out fighting, with compliments.
As hacks made their way into the London Stock Exchange for the announcement, Bolland stood at the door and shook everyone’s hand – “You’re right on trend,” he said to one lady of her outfit. “Looking rad,” he offered to another, continuing to point out the gathered women’s sartorial triumphs.
He made it perfectly clear M&S is targeting womenswear. Dodging questions about menswear and childrenswear, he spoke of what “she wants”.
He deviated briefly to tell us the highlight of M&S’s Christmas food would be the five gold rings chocolate cake. “One of the best parts of my job was tasting it,” he said and waxed lyrical about the value of M&S’s huge prawns.
But unfortunately, Bolland’s preoccupation with the ladies caused him to miss a trick.
One of The Capitalist’s spies was there and shook his hand but got no compliment – despite the fact he was dressed head-to-toe in M&S.