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Gloucestershire Business News

Travis Perkins to axe 2,500 jobs

Travis Perkins has announced plans to cut 2,500 job as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic continues to be felt.

The UK's largest building materials group includes more than 20 businesses, including the Wickes DIY chain and Toolstation.

The proposed job cuts represent about nine per cent of the company's workforce with 165 branch closures.

Travis Perkins saw a 40 per cent plunge in sales during May compared to 12 months earlier and despite a pick-up as branches reopened following lockdown, it has started the consultation process in its distribution, administrative and sales sectors alongside the planned closures.

Small branches with difficulties to implement social distancing requirements are most at threat.

Chief executive Nick Roberts said: "This is in no way a reflection on those employees impacted and we will do everything we can to support them during this process.

"While we have experienced improving trends, we do not expect a return to pre-COVID trading conditions for some time and consequently we have had to take the very difficult decision to begin consultations on the closure of selected branches and to reduce our workforce to ensure we can protect the group as a whole.

"The group has a robust balance sheet, strong liquidity position and I am confident that these proposed changes will enable us to trade successfully through this period of uncertainty with a cost base that better reflects the environment we are operating in."

Travis Perkins has two branches in Cheltenham with further outlets in Gloucester, Stroud, Cinderford, Lydney, Coleford, Ross-on-Wye and Tewkesbury.

Punchline-Gloucester.com says: "We have delivered copies of Punchline magazine to branches of Travis Perkins for several years and, having met many of their staff, are saddened to hear this news.

"Sadly, this is a reflection of where the economy is after the impact of the coronavirus and we hope the county branches we have got to know - and the associated businesses which will be affected by any closure - are not among those included in the planned list of closures."

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