BHS decides to take on M&S by slavishly copying it

Even though M&S is being roundly beaten in the high street popularity stakes by Next, BHS are launching an aggressive strategy, which is to copy M&S in every way possible.

philip green

Lord Business, otherwise known as Sir Philip Green, famously made a £71m loss on BHS last year, and the store has been in the doldrums for years, managing to make Littlewoods look vibrant and fashionable with its tedious range of godawful blouses and high waisted Mum jeans.

But now, Sir Phil has poached loads of people from M&S, including MD Richard Price, womenswear director Sara Bradley and childrenswear head Rachael Smith. He’s whacking in food halls in 50 stores and introducing new lines of homewares and clothing that don’t look like they were delivered directly from 1985 in the back of a Delorean.

Of course, Sir Phil has poo pooed any comparison between M&S and the all new M&S BHS, apart from to announce that he’ll be trying to steal their demographic of ‘Middle England Mums’. ‘People don’t want to buy cheap rubbish,’ said Phil, who has been peddling cheap rubbish for donkey’s years. ‘They want to buy nicer things. Premium value.’

Carrying on just spouting words for the sake of it, Sir Phil said his homewares had to pass a test. ‘If you put it on the table without a label, can you tell it’s from BHS?’

(Yes. Usually. Because if it’s from BHS nobody will touch it with a bargepole.)

But could we one day live in Bizarro World, where M&S is the laughable high street donkey, and everyone is flocking to BHS to buy 'nicer things'? Or is Sir Phil losing his marbles?


  • David
    BHS at Oxford Circus already had a copycat M&S Foodhall in the sixties. (Long before Marks had developed their food offerings to today's extent.) The products were almost identical. One feature not adopted by Marks was - wait for it! - a pick n mix frozen vegetable counter. Back to the future!
  • Algernon
    Is that his neck or a flesh-coloured polo neck jumper?

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