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John Lewis to invest £30m into direct sales

LONDON - Retail group the John Lewis Partnership is to invest £30m into a new direct selling operation, which will comprise a catalogue and e-commerce business.

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The group, which owns the John Lewis department store and supermarket Waitrose, said it aims to become the UK's biggest direct seller.

The £30m investment in its direct sales operation will be spread over a five-year period. It includes the launch this week of a new website,, which offers 5,000 key home and gift items.

A John Lewis spokesman said, "We expect profits within five years and to see sales at £50m."

In February, John Lewis bought the UK arm of online retailer The technology it acquired as part of its purchase of has been used to power the new John Lewis site.

At the time of its acquisition of, which sold books, computers and videos, John Lewis said it would use to drive its online expansion.

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