John Lewis will not reopen some stores after lockdown
John Lewis has confirmed that it will probably not be reopening some of its department stores that closed during the Covid-19 lockdown.
The retailer’s chairman, Sharon White, has written to staff saying that it is unlikely that all 50 of its stores will reopen. She also said that the retailer’s staff bonus may not be paid next year.
Around 20 John Lewis stores have reopened since the easing of the lockdown and a further ten will reopen this month. White did not name the stores earmarked for closure.
According to the Evening Standard, which has seen the letter, White said: “The difficult reality is that we have too much store space for the way people want to shop now. As difficult as it is, we now know that it is highly unlikely that we will reopen all our John Lewis stores. Regrettably, it is likely that there will be implications for some partners’ jobs,. We are in active discussions with landlords about ending some leases and renegotiating others to make the terms more flexible.”
White also said that the retailer is rethinking its head office space and that an office in London’s Victoria will also close. The site is home to 450 staff.
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