Marc Bolland has said the £2bn re-fit programme carried out under his predecessor as Marks & Spencer boss was “a job that still needed the next step” to make its stores “more inspiring”.

As part of an ongoing drive to improve the shopping experience, M&S will tailor its in-store offer to the wealth and demographics of local shoppers – a first for the high street giant.

“While the last store modernisation programme improved the core infrastructure of our stores, it has not delivered an inspirational shopping environment for our customers,” he admitted.

Bolland was speaking as the retailer announced its latest yearly results, which saw pre-tax profits rise almost 13% to £714m on sales of £9.7bn.

He also suggested M&S could make a return to the US market. “We will have a look at the US, not tomorrow but later,” the former Morrisons boss told journalists yesterday.

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