Department store Harvey Nichols to cut dozens of jobs

By Staff

Harvey Nichols is planning to cut dozens of jobs in its head office as part of a major shake-up of its operations. The historic department store chain said less than 5% of its workforce was at risk of redundancy as result.

It understood the plans will affect around 60 London-based employees, subject to a consultation process.

The group, which is owned by Hong-Kong based Sir Dickson Poon, said it would seek to offer impacted workers roles in other parts of the business.

The retailer, which was founded in 1831, has stores in London, Leeds, Edinburgh, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol and Dublin. It also has a dedicated beauty store in Liverpool as well as international sites.

Bosses at the company said the overhaul comes after the retailer came under pressure from recent rampant inflation, cost increases and the end to tax-free shopping for tourists in the UK.

Rivals, such as Selfridges and John Lewis, have also cut jobs over the past year amid efforts to reduce operating costs.

Pearson Poon, Harvey Nichols’ vice chairman, said: “We are taking action to simplify and strengthen our business by optimising our cost structure to operate more efficiently across our support team. Coming out of Covid has been very difficult for the wider retail industry in the UK, which faced increased inflation, cost pressures, and the loss of tax-free shopping.

“We are making difficult decisions today to ensure we are well positioned for success in a continuously evolving retail environment.”

On Tuesday (March 19), the luxury firm also confirmed it saw higher sales over the previous financial year and cut its losses.

Accounts for the year to April 1 2023, which are due to be published soon, are set to show revenues grew by 13% to £216.6m as it continues its recovery following the impact of the pandemic and cost-of-living pressures.

It also recorded a pre-tax loss of £21.3m for the year, down from £30.4m a year earlier.

Last year, the group’s boss Manju Malhotra stepped down from the company after reported tensions over its growth strategy.

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