Debt investors

We measure our financial sustainability through the following three KPIs.

Debt Ratio

Comparison of our Total net debts1 to Adjusted cash flow2. This measure is important as it provides an indication of our ability to repay our debts. We are committed to reduce our Debt Ratio position to around three times.

Return on Invested Capital (ROIC)

Operating profit before Partnership Bonus and exceptional items3, adjusted for above market rewards4, a notional interest on leases (at a 5% interest rate on lease liabilities) and a notional tax charge (at the statutory marginal tax rate for the year), as a proportion of average operating net assets, adjusted to reflect the value of leased assets. This is important because it demonstrates how effectively we are utilising our assets.  

Partnership profit per average FTE £000

Profit before Partnership Bonus and exceptional items3 but after tax, adjusted for above market reward4, divided by the average number of full-time equivalent Partners. This measure is important as it provides the best indication of Partner productivity.


Further information on our financial strategy can be found in the John Lewis Partnership Annual Report and Accounts 2021.


The John Lewis Partnership holds two corporate bonds which are listed on the stock exchange.


Issuing Company Issued Date Maturity Date Issued Amount Coupon Minimum Denominations Listed ISIN
John Lewis Plc July 2010 January 2025 £300m 6.125% £50,000 London Stock Exchange XS0527985583
John Lewis Plc December 2014 December 2034 £300m 4.250% £100,000 London Stock Exchange XS1140961563

The principal financial risks that we are exposed to relate to the capital structure and long term funding of the Partnership and also to the markets and counterparties we are exposed to in our operations. They can be summarised as:

  • Pension risk
  • Capital and long term funding risk
  • Liquidity risk
  • Interest rate risk
  • Foreign currency risk

If you have further queries, please email the investor relations team on

1 The Partnership’s borrowings and overdrafts, finance lease liabilities and derivative financial instruments, IAS 19 pension deficit net of deferred tax, and the present value of future rentals payable under operating leases calculated using a 5% discount rate, less any liquid cash, short-term deposits and investments.

2 Operating profit before Partnership Bonus, exceptional items, depreciation, amortisation and average one year lease payments, but after lease adjusted interest and tax.

3 Items of income and/or expense which are significant by virtue of their size and nature are presented as exceptional items. The separate reporting of exceptional items helps to provide an indication of the Partnership’s underlying business performance.

4 These are Partner benefits which are higher than those typically paid by our competitors, as a result of the Partnership model. Above market rewards principally includes pensions, long leave, Partner discount and costs of our democracy.