John Lewis to offer health checks to customers

November 25, 2023  –John Lewis is to offer health checks to customers including tests for vitamin deficiencies and hormone imbalances.

It will partner with Covid-19 testing company, Randox Health, opening clinics at stores in an attempt to attract more customers through the doors.

The first clinic will be at the High Wycombe store starting on the 18th December, followed by the Bluewater shopping centre branch in Kent.

It is part of a move to add more services after sales fell at the chain.

John Lewis said it would make healthcare “more convenient and accessible”.

Customers will be able to sign up to Randox programmes – which include a range of health checks, starting at £295.

Randox Health came to prominence during the pandemic, becoming a major supplier of Covid-19 tests.

Between January 2020 and December 2021, the UK’s Department of Health awarded 22 contracts to Randox, or its strategic partner with a maximum value of £777m.

Later Randox came under scrutiny over the way it was awarded those contracts. However, an investigation by the National Audit Office (NAO) over concerns that contracts were awarded without competitive tendering, concluded that it had “not seen any evidence that the government’s contracts with Randox were awarded improperly”.

UK High Streets and shopping centres have struggled to compete with the rise of online shopping in recent years, made harder by the shift to home and hybrid working following the pandemic. The challenges proved too much for some chains, including rival department stores BHS and Debenhams.

To compete John Lewis has been steadily increasing the services it offers. It already hosts opticians, travel agents, beauty salons and personal shopping services as part of its effort to diversify its offering to customers.

The pivot to more services, alongside its homeware, clothing and other products, was part of an overhaul spearheaded by the retailer’s chairwoman, Sharon White, who will leave the firm in February next year.

Ms White’s impending departure comes after a tumultuous few months, which saw parent group, the John Lewis Partnership, which also owns Waitrose supermarkets, report a £59m loss for the six months to 29 July.

Sales across its department stores fell 2% to £2.1bn in the first half of this year, although visitor numbers were up 8%.

The group has said its turnaround will take two years longer than previously planned.

Naomi Simcock, the head of the John Lewis chain, said: “In Randox we have an experienced and innovative partner to extend our range of in-store services, to help customers proactively manage their health and wellbeing.”

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