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Gloucestershire Business News

John Lewis store closures could be on the way

The new head of the John Lewis Partnership has warned that store closures and job losses could be around the corner, unless its financial performance improves.

Sharon White took over as partnership chairman this week. She used her first speech to managers to call for a greater "ethical and environmental" approach and more diversity among the staff, know as partners, as reported by Sky News.

But it is the prospect of store closures that will be the biggest cause for concern here in Gloucestershire. It is less than 18 months since Cheltenham's John Lewis store opened. The county is also home to three Waitrose supermarkets - in Cheltenham, Cirencester and Stroud.

Along with much of the retail sector, the John Lewis Partnership has been through some troubled times in recent years. It closed 12 unprofitable supermarkets last year, with the loss of 1,100 jobs.

Partners have already been warned that they may not receive their annual bonus when it is due in March.

John Lewis will release its annual results on 5th March.

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