Harrods And John Lewis Cut Jobs In Blow To U.K. Retail Industry
Britain’s retail industry suffered a fresh blow, with two high-profile department stores cutting hundreds of jobs in response to the coronavirus crisis. Harrods, the luxury emporium, is planning to cull as much as 14% of its 4,800-strong workforce. John Lewis Partnership Plc, a mass-market retailer, said some shops will not reopen following the lockdown and warned that it may not pay a bonus to its employee-owners this year. It would be the first time there was no payout since World War II. News of the cuts comes amid deeply depressed conditions for U.K. retailers, whose shops were closed for nearly three months as part of the effort to contain the virus. While most stores have been open again since mid-June, lower foot traffic and demand are eating away at profits. Many retailers also face deferred rent and tax payments, as well as higher costs of running stores safely. Read more at Bloomberg.