Spain’s Largest Department Store Chain Believes in Expansion by Absorption

El Corte Inglés: Europe’s largest department store chain Credit: Raúl Hernández González flickr

THE largest department store chain in Europe, Spain’s El Corte Inglés traditionally holds its annual shareholders meeting at the end of August but brought the date forward to Sunday July 26 with the majority of shareholders attending digitally.

Two major matters to be raised will be a reduction in the dividend to be paid to a total of €37.5 million and a decision to incorporate its subsidiary, clothing brand Sfera into the main company for strategic reasons.

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There is little likelihood of job losses for the brand which operates 71 stores in Spain and Portugal and has a number of franchises around the world.

Unlike many other European stores, El Corte Inglés follows a policy of running merged companies both within its department stores as well as leaving them as standalone retail units which include Bricor, Hipercor, Supercor plus the new Sfera in order to take advantage of smaller outlets.

Overall profits for the financial year (March 2019 to February 2020) are up by just over 20 per cent and represent the most successful year of trading since 2010.


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