M&S Indian expansion to see country become second largest market

Marks and Spencer has confirmed today that it plans to build a "leadership position" in India, as part of its strategy to become a leading international and multi-channel retailer.

Chief executive Marc Bolland said that India is a "priority market" for M&S. The company already has 36 stores in India and the plans will see the country becoming its biggest market outside of the UK. The target is for around 80 stores by 2016 and a doubling of M&S's presence, as it continues to work closely with its partner, Reliance Retail.

Flagship stores in Mumbai and Delhi will be complemented by supporting cluster stores, and new stores will be opened in cities such as Surat and Kanpur. M&S plans to capitalise on the growth opportunities in lingerie and beauty.