John Lewis launches retail bond for first time

LONDON Sun Mar 6, 2011 4:54pm GMT

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LONDON (Reuters) - Department store chain John Lewis said it planned to raise 50 million pounds by launching a retail bond, the first time the employee-owned company has made such an offer.

The five-year fixed-rate bond will be launched Monday and offered to cardholders and staff.

"The Partnership Bond issue is in keeping with HM Treasury's desire to develop non-bank lending channels to help improve macroeconomic resilience in the longer term," said Charlie Mayfield, Chairman of the John Lewis Partnership.

John Lewis is expected to announce a rise in profit of about 15 percent when it posts 2010 results Wednesday, as its affluent customer base has continued to spend during the downturn.

(Reporting by Rosalba O'Brien; Editing by Jon Loades-Carter)

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