Hundreds of jobs threatened at Debenhams as it launches redundancy consultation

Debenhams has placed hundreds of jobs in redundancy consultation amid a major cost cutting drive, as rumours about a possible takeover continue to circle.

The embattled department store’s redundancy talks are expected to result in around 90 staff losing their jobs across its fashion and home departments, stripping out layers of management.

“We announced our intention to restructure our organisation around three business units: beauty and beauty services, fashion and home, and food and events earlier this year,” Debenhams said in a statement.

“Our work to create a simplified and consistent structure across these units, reducing complexity and driving efficiency in order to deliver our Debenhams Redesigned strategy, is continuing.”

At the beginning of the year Debenhams, which expects full year profits to drop from £50.3 million to between £35 and £40 million, slashed 320 store management roles.

Its major cost cutting drive, aiming to rebalance its finance sheet after three profit warnings this year, is expected to save the retailer around £20 million a year.

This follows news yesterday that Mike Ashley, who owns nearly 30 per cent of Debenhams, may be considering a takeover bid.

Following Ashley’s recent acquisition of the embattled department store House of Fraser, many have speculated Debenhams and House of Fraser could be merged by the retail mogul, sending its share prices rallying.

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