Marc Bolland, set to take over as chief executive of Marks & Spencer, may look to raise cash from shareholders to improve his chances of reviving the British retailer and justifying his huge pay package.
Europe's retailers are braced for a tough 2010 amid signs a tentative economic recovery has yet to boost consumer spending and fears high unemployment and low wage growth will dampen confidence in the months ahead.
Tight management of costs and stocks and better than expected summer sales helped two of Europe's top fashion retailers beat first-half profit forecasts, although there was some caution about the trading outlook.
Marks & Spencer (MKS.L) has shown it can sort out self-inflicted problems and come up with steps to mitigate the recession, but the jury remains out on whether more radical surgery is needed for a lasting recovery.
French retailer PPR posted better-than-expected second-quarter revenues, helped by sparkling sales at its luxury arm Gucci, but some of its retail units were, as forecast, hurt by sluggish consumer spending.