2,000 jobs at risk at Shop Direct due to closure of three fulfilment sites
Shop Direct, the owner of Very.co.uk and Littlewoods.com, has announced plans to exit its fulfilment sites in Greater Manchester as part of a strategy to upgrade its fulfilment capabilities.
Following an 18-month review, Shop Direct said the sites at Shaw, Little Hulton and Raven did not meet its future needs due to a lack of space, limited accessibility and restrictions on layout and loading.
The company plans to begin exiting the sites from mid-2020. The move is expected to impact 1,177 permanent Shop Direct staff and 815 agency staff with redundancies expected.
It will also open a new 500,000 square foot distribution and returns centre in the East Midlands. Development of the site at East Midlands Gateway is due to start in May 2018. The site is expected to be fully operational by 2021.
Derek Harding, interim group chife executive of Shop Direct, said: “This is a tough day for the business and we know how difficult this news will be to hear for our teams in Shaw, Little Hulton and Raven. However, these proposals are necessary for our future and to enable us to continue to grow and meet rising customer expectations.
“We take very seriously our responsibilities to our colleagues, many of whom have been with us for a long time and who work tirelessly to deliver for our customers. We are working alongside Usdaw, our recognised trade union, and will listen carefully to what they have to say. We’ll also work closely with local authorities and community leaders to make sure this process is carried out as fairly and sensitively as possible for our colleagues.”
Shop Direct said the new purpose-built and automated facility in the East Midlands will be able to accommodate all one-man fulfilment and returns operations on one site, and will provide room for continued expansion.
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