Sainsbury’s announces closure of Essex and Manchester Argos depots with 1,400 jobs affected
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Sainsbury’s has announced it’s planning to close two Argos depots over the next three years which will impact more than 1,400 jobs. Sainsbury’s plans to shut its Argos warehouse in Basildon, Essex, and a depot in Heywood, Greater Manchester by 2026 as it reduces the number of depots from five to three.
Both Sainsbury’s staff and those who work for an outsourced contractor will be affected, it said. However, workers will have the opportunity to explore alternative roles within the company.
Sainsbury’s issued a statement which outlined the reasons for changes. The retailer said the new three-site depot network will create a ‘simpler, more modern network to significantly improve availability, reduce stock and enable faster customer deliveries.’ It also said the new layout will ‘improve productivity and the working environment, as well as increasing resilience and flexibility for the future.’
Sainsbury’s chief executive Simon Roberts said it was a "difficult" decision but the business needed to become "simpler, more efficient and more effective for customers".
He said: “As with any major change to our business, we have not taken the difficult decision to start this consultation lightly. As part of our plan to create a simpler business, we previously set out our intention to integrate our Argos and Sainsbury’s logistics networks.
“Over the last few years, we’ve been working hard to transform this network as we make our business simpler, more efficient and more effective for customers. This also allows us to reduce costs, so we can invest where it will make the most impact for our customers.
“We understand that this will be an unsettling time for affected colleagues, and we will support them however we can throughout this process.”
The supermarket chain also said it would close its Milton Keynes office in response to flexible working across the group, but stressed no jobs would be impacted by the decision. However, it also announced that its three remaining Habitat showrooms will close later this year as it plans to launch a replacement digital showroom, which will see a small number of workers affected.