John Lewis and Waitrose add ‘& Partners’ as the businesses focus on what differentiates them from competitors
Today, the 83,000 Partners who work for the John Lewis Partnership have - for the first time in the company’s history been included in the businesses’ names as both John Lewis and Waitrose have added ‘& Partners’.
The change has been designed to highlight their Partnership business model and culture which differentiates them from their main competitors at a time when both businesses are investing in the service their partners offer.
This morning ‘John Lewis & Partners’ and ‘Waitrose & Partners’ were unveiled on the facades of John Lewis’s flagship shop on Oxford Street, which has undergone a multi-million pound refurbishment, its shop at White City, Westfield, and Waitrose’s shops in Edgware Road and Clerkenwell in London; as well as on johnlewis.com, waitrose.com, carrier bags, uniforms, trolleys, marketing activity, internal shop signs and selected lorries and vans.
The full identity change to all 348 Waitrose and 50 John Lewis shop facades and the combined fleet of 3,500 lorries and vans is being phased over a number of years to tie in with refurbishment plans.
In addition to investing in their identities the John Lewis Partnership said in June that it would continue to invest in both businesses at a rate of £400m-£500m per year, to enable the two retail businesses to differentiate themselves from other retailers by innovating in products, customer service and services.
Today, John Lewis & Partners’ largest own brand womenswear collection of 300 designs, which was created entirely in-house and carries the new name John Lewis & Partners went on sale. The retailer has also launched its first own-brand gifting collection called ‘Find Keep Give’. The range is comprised of unique pieces, the majority of which were designed in-house by Partners.
The packaging of Waitrose own label product ranges will begin a programme of change from October, starting with the new Christmas range later this year, as well as the launch of its new ‘Free From’ range in October.
Both retailers are investing in their Partners to enhance their skills and product knowledge in order to deliver exceptional experiences. These include the creation of Customer Service Ambassadors who provide warm and personalised customer service front of store, the creation of healthy eating specialists, training Partners to offer a concierge style service and equipping Personal Stylists with the skills to deliver daily fashion talks; as well as investing in technology to improve customer service.
Paula Nickolds, John Lewis & Partners, Managing Director said; “Our Partnership business model and the inherent strength of our Partners really sets us apart. That’s why the change to our visual identity this week puts Partners back at the heart of everything we do. This move not only reflects the business we have become but more importantly, the business we want to be.”
Rob Collins, Waitrose & Partners Managing Director said: “This moment is far more significant than simply adding words and changing the design. It symbolises something bigger, expressing what’s different about our business and signalling our intent to make that difference count for even more: committed, knowledgeable Partners who care about the business they own, sharing their love of food and offering great customer service.”
The launch of the new identity is being supported by the first ever joint John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners national marketing campaign; the single biggest ever campaign for both brands outside of Christmas. It includes a new TV and cinema advert, which features children putting their heart into performing a school play to the sound of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody song and ends with the line ‘For us, it’s personal’.
The campaign, which conveys the key message that when you are part of something, you put your heart into it and shines a light on the stories and skills of more than 100 real Partners from across both businesses to illustrate what makes the Partnership a unique business.
Central to the campaign is a manifesto which will appear in print ads and will be spoken by real Partners from both John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners in a film played in John Lewis & Partners’ shops.
Notes to editors:
History of the John Lewis & Partners brand identity
- The first John Lewis store opened in 1864 in Oxford Street, London and was named after the company’s founder John Lewis
- In 1929 his son Spedan Lewis created The John Lewis Partnership
- The retailer's policy to be "Never Knowingly Undersold" was created in 1925
- In 1937 the John Lewis Partnership bought Waitrose
- The first John Lewis logo was created in the 1920s in black
- In 2008 John Lewis Oxford Street were awarded their first warrant Royal Warrant by Her Majesty The Queen
- Today the retailer holds three Royal Warrants; John Lewis Oxford Street: HM The Queen Privy Purse, Suppliers of Haberdashery and Household Goods. Peter Jones: HRH The Duke of Edinburgh Draper and Furnisher and HRH The Prince of Wales, Draper & Furnisher.
History of the Waitrose & Partners brand identity
- Waitrose originated in 1904 when Wallace Wyndham Waite, Arthur Rose and David Taylor opened
- ‘Waite, Rose & Taylor’ in Acton. After two years Taylor left the business, which saw the name
- ‘Waitrose’ first appears on the high street in 1908 as a private limited company. It wasn’t until 1937 that it became part of the John Lewis Partnership with ten shops.
- The first Waitrose logo was actually blue and dates back to the late 1920s early 1930s when Waitrose used to be known for their 'smart' black delivery vehicles.
- Waitrose started changing from its orange of the 80s and 90s to its current green in 2002.
- In 1928 the Waitrose brand was awarded its first royal warrant by King George V to its Windsor shop. Today it holds two royal warrants; HM The Queen Master of the Household, Grocers and Wine & Spirit Merchants and HRH The Prince of Wales, Grocer and Wine & Spirit Merchants.
The John Lewis Partnership is the UK's largest example of an employee-owned business where all 83,000 staff are Partners in the business. The business has annual gross sales of over £11.5bn.
John Lewis & Partners operates 50 John Lewis shops across the UK (36 department stores, 12 John Lewis at home and shops at St Pancras International and Heathrow Terminal 2) as well as johnlewis.com. The retailer stocks around 350,000 separate lines in its department stores and on johnlewis.com across fashion, home and technology. This year John Lewis & Partners won, 'Best Multichannel Retailer 2018', 'Best Clothing Retailer 2018', and 'Best Furniture Retailer 2018' at the GlobalData Customer Satisfaction Awards 2018. John Lewis Insurance offers a range of comprehensive insurance products - home, car, wedding and event, travel and pet insurance and life cover - delivering the values of expertise, trust and customer service expected from the John Lewis & Partners brand
*GlobalData Retail Customer Satisfaction Awards 2018
Waitrose & Partners has 353 shops in England, Scotland, Wales and the Channel Islands, including 65 convenience branches, and another 27 shops at Welcome Break locations. It combines the convenience of a supermarket with the expertise and service of a specialist shop - dedicated to offering quality food that has been responsibly sourced, combined with high standards of customer service. Waitrose also exports products to more than 50 countries worldwide and has nine shops which operate under licence in the Middle East. Waitrose's omnichannel business includes the online grocery service, waitrose.com, as well as specialist online shops including waitrosecellar.com for wine, waitroseflorist.com for plants and flowers and waitrosegifts.com for gifts. In recent months, Waitrose has been awarded the much-coveted European-wide Compassion in World Farming 'Best Retailer Award', Soil Association's 'Best Organic Supermarket Award 2017' and The Drinks Business' 'Retail Buying Team of the Year Award'.
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