John Lewis boss says chain is too 'beige'

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The Independent Online

Shoppers love its prices and service but John Lewis can be a bit boring, according to one of its most senior managers. Craig Inglis, the first director of marketing at Britain's biggest chain of department stores, said it could be accused of being "beige".

Promising to shake off its "fuddy duddy" image, he said: "We need to be more polarising in our advertising. There's probably a group of our customers that hate our recent ads, but I think that's OK. We've got to challenge them." Mr Inglis said John Lewis was aiming to be the "most trusted and loved" shop in Britain but without being too old-fashioned. In some areas, the employee-owned partnership was "15 years behind" the likes of Tesco, he said.

Making the off-the-cuff comments to Marketing Week magazine, he said: "There is a level of change occurring that hasn't happened in the business before. We can be accused of being beige so we're trying not to be."