MARKS and Spencer is a long-established British retailer that has been on our high streets for more than 100 years.

Over that time, it has changed dramatically with hundreds of new stories and changes of ownership.

Marks and Spencer has been running for more than 100 years


Marks and Spencer has been running for more than 100 yearsCredit: Reuters

Who owns Marks and Spencer?

According to their official website, Marks and Spencer’s is owned by the British banking organisation HSBC.

They stated that in November 2004, HSBC bought 100 per cent of the share capital of Marks and Spencer Retail Financial Services Holdings Limited.

The total assets of the bank HSBC, according to Statistics, is worth an estimated 2.98 trillion U.S. dollars.

The company’s largest shareholder is Schroder Investment Management Limited, with ownership of 8.1%.

In total the business is worth UK£1.8b as of October 2020

M&S is currently owned by HSBC


M&S is currently owned by HSBCCredit: AFP and licensors

Who is the CEO of Marks and Spencer?

Marks and Spencer’s CEO is Steve Rowe, who has been in the position since April 2, 2016.

According the official website Mr Rowe has over 30 years of retail and consumer brand experience to as part of M&S, having first joined the business in 1983 as a store assistant in Croydon.  

Having then progessed through a number of roles, he was appointed to the Board in October 2012 as Executive Director of Food, before becoming Executive Director of General Merchandise in July 2015.

In his current CEO role, Mr Rowe is also the Chair of the Business in the Community Place Leadership Team and works alongside company chairman Archie Norman.

The CEO of Marks and Spencer is Steve Rowe


The CEO of Marks and Spencer is Steve RoweCredit: PR Handout

How old is Marks and Spencer?

Marks and Spencer’s was founded in 1884 between Michel Marks and Thomas Spencer, making the company 137 years old as of 2021.

The company was originally set up in Kirakate Market in Leeds, but soon expanded across the UK thanks to a £300 investment in staff and property.

By 1900 Marks & Spencer had expanded to include 36 Penny Bazaar outlets, including 12 high street stores with the rest being market stalls.

The business dates back to 1884


The business dates back to 1884Credit: SOPA Images/LightRocket via Gett

As of 2021, the company has more than 1,400 stories across 57 countries with 50 international websites.

In the UK there is believed to be 959 stores, including 615 that only sell food products.

The company also sell clothing and home equipment and now run their own bank and energy suppliers.

They also have a working partnership with The University of Leeds.

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