Primark cuts hundreds of jobs in management reshuffle

By Becky Bargh 20-Jan-2022

Plans will ‘simplify’ beauty and fashion retailer’s operations as effects of Omicron wane

Primark's Rotterdam, Netherlands, store

Fast fashion and beauty retailer Primark has announced plans to cut 400 jobs from its 29,000-strong UK workforce, amid a management shake-up.

The proposed changes are thought to “simplify” Primark’s retail operations and provide “clearer accountability” for staff members.

Primark, which operates 191 stores in the UK, also said that the plans would give shop floor workers “greater flexibility and more management support”.

“The changes we’re proposing will deliver a simplified and more consistent management structure across all of our stores, providing more opportunities for career progression and offer greater flexibility, all of which are designed to help us provide the best possible experience for both our customers and our colleagues,” said Primark’s UK Retail Director, Kari Rodgers.

“We are now focused on supporting our colleagues who are affected by these proposed changes and will be going through the consultation process.”

The axe follows a booming Christmas trading period for the retailer with sales of £2.6bn for the 16 weeks to 8 January, a 36% increase on the previous year, which was blighted by lockdowns to non-essential retail.

A statement from Primark’s owner Associated British Foods revealed that the retailer’s total sales for the period were 5% lower than pre-Covid levels, however.

The report also shed more light on Primark’s supply chain operations, stating that the disruption experienced in the autumn had “alleviated”.

Some delays in dispatches at ports, however, are continuing to hinder shipping times, which the group said would “continue for some time”.

Primark’s new and improved website is also set to make its debut in March this year, showcasing new products and product availability in-store.

Despite a global pandemic and multiple lockdowns, Primark is still not willing to interact with e-commerce and has instead committed to increasing store space by 500,000sqft globally this financial year. Sign up for your free email newsletter

New stores are expected to pop up in Bucharest, a first in Romania, taking its market reach to 16 countries.

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