John Lewis to impose higher fees on brands

Brands stocked by John Lewis are facing a price hike as the department store bellwether plans to charge them more for stocking products.

Suppliers already have to pay John Lewis up to 50 per cent of each sale made via the retailer in fees and commissions, compared with around 38 per cent which brands pay to M&S and Next.

Not content with this premium pricing structure, John Lewis chair, Dame Sharon White, has appointed Alix Partners to renegotiate fees with suppliers. One fashion brand told The Sunday Times that he was ‘flabbergated’ by the proposals, saying that John Lewis’ fees were already ‘ridiculous’ and ‘already the most expensive on the market.’

The price hikes are likely to prompt brands to consider pulling out a their margins are squeezed past the point that makes supplying John Lewis worthwhile. Fashion brand Seasalt recently switched away from John Lewis to M&S and Next.

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