// Arcadia has furloughed “a substantial number” of staff as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic
// The retail empire also informed its senior team about a pay cut
// Store staff were furloughed from March 21
Arcadia Group has furloughed 14,500 of its 16,000 employees, while senior leaders take a pay cut as a result of the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
The news comes after the retail empire – which owns the likes of Topshop, Burton and Dorothy Perkins – joined the list of retailers demanding rent cuts after their stores were forced to shut due to the pandemic.
Arcadia said all store staff had been furloughed since March 21, and “the majority” of its headquarter employees will follow suit from April 5.
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The retail giant’s senior leadership team and board will take salary cuts of between 25 per cent and 50 per cent, while group chief executive Ian Grabiner has elected to receive no salary or benefits until the pandemic ends.
Meanwhile, furloughed staff will benefit from the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, which will allow them to receive 80 per cent of their salaries up to £2500 a month.
As a result of the lockdown, Arcadia closed its store estate on March 20 until further notice.
The retailer maintained that “the health and wellbeing of employees, customers and communities remains paramount”.
Its online operations continue to operate at “reduced capacity” in a bid to ensure the safety of employees within distribution centres.
“The actions we have taken are essential in order that we can manage our business through these unprecedented times,” Grabiner said.
“We are grateful for the support and understanding of our staff and all of our stakeholders during this incredibly challenging time.
“We look forward to opening our store doors again as soon as it is safe to do so and welcoming back our colleagues and customers.”