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Selfridges to cut 450 jobs as it faces ‘toughest year in recent history’

By Huw Hughes

28 Jul 2020

Selfridges has become the latest British fashion company to announce job cuts as the fallout of Covid-19 continues to wreak havoc on the high street.

Managing director Anne Pitcher told staff in a letter Tuesday that the company would be cutting its workforce by 14 percent - or around 450 roles. “As a creative business at the forefront of retail we have a proud history of leading the way, however, the speed and magnitude of what is happening right now and the impact on trading, means we must make sure some fundamental changes to our organisation to stay ahead and realise a more sustainable future,” Pitcher said.

Selfridges prepares for tough year ahead

Pitcher also warned that the company’s recovery would be “slow” and that sales this year are expected to be “significantly” less than they were in 2019. “It will, without doubt, be the toughest year we have experience in our recent history,” she said.

A growing list of British fashion companies have announced job cuts and store closures in recent weeks as they struggle to mitigate the financial impact of Covid-19. It emerged this month that fellow luxury department store chains Harrods and Harvey Nichols would both be downsizing their workforces.

Other big-name British companies to announce job cuts, or consider them, include Burberry, Ted Baker, Stella McCartney, John Lewis, Marks & Spencer, River Island, Arcadia and White Stuff.

Photo credit: Selfridges