In an effort to stem the steady flow of money leaving the company, fashion retailer New Look is making significant cuts to head office staff numbers, Retail Gazette understands.
A source has confirmed that the whole of the retailer’s acquisitions team has been made redundant with immediate effect, including its management, and around a dozen members of the property team have also been let go in recent weeks.
Cost-cutting was given as the primary reason for reducing its headcount which is unsurprising given the £60 million fall in profits reported for its full-year period ending March 26th.
The failure to float the firm at the beginning of last year hit the firm hard, preventing it from reducing its net debt which stands at over £1 billion, and with sales starting to fall New Look is in serious need of belt-tightening.
Responding to the redundancy claims, a New Look spokesman said: “As part of our ongoing strategic review of the business we can confirm that a number of positions are presently under review.”
Other divisions at the retailer’s head office have apparently been warned that further redundancies may follow and that after a reorganisation of its stores team, future investment in properties is likely to be curbed.
New Look had been embarking on a ‘Look and Feel’ store upgrade and refurbishment programme, with work completed on 331 of its 1,051 outlets worldwide.
It is now understood however that any new stores, including one at Westfield Stratford opening in September, are likely to be more basic in design then previous concept outlets in order to focus on a value offering.