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John Lewis to open website to Europe

The John Lewis Partnership is looking to expand the international reach of its department store business John Lewis and food business Waitrose.

John Lewis is looking to make its UK website available abroad to attract business from other European markets, according to the Financial Times.

It then plans to use the data it collects from overseas shoppers to draw up a blueprint for European cities that could support physical John Lewis stores.

The department store group could also launch foreign language websites to serve overseas customers.

Waitrose, the John Lewis Partnership food business, has this week opened its first wholly owned venture outside the UK with a store in Jersey. It is the first of five Channel Island stores planned to open this year.

Mark Price, Waitrose managing director says the investment in systems and structures for the Channel Island stores gives Waitrose a “platform for future international growth."

Waitrose has sold its own brand products as an FMCG brand in Channel Island retailers Checkers and Safeway for more than 10 years.

Waitrose is expected to step up its export business by shipping its branded products to Canada and the US later this year. It already ships its own label products to countries including Barbados, Bermuda, Cyprus, Dubai, Falkland Islands, Grenada, India, Kuwait, Qatar, Tortola, Trinidad, Saudi Arabia and St Lucia.

It also operates stores in the Middle East under franchise agreement and last week opened a store in Bahrain.

Source : Rosie Baker - Marketing Week

14 February 2011
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