National pharmacy chain Boots has said it will cut over 4,000 jobs due to the “significant impact” of Covid-19.
The high-street chemist will axe 7% of its workforce in the restructuring, with a particular impact expected to hit its support office in Nottingham.
The move, announced on Thursday, will also result in the closure of 48 Boots Opticians stores.
It will also affect some deputy and assistant manager, beauty adviser and customer adviser roles across its stores, PA reports.
The news follows Boots’ retail sales dropping 48% over the past three months in the face of the pandemic, despite the firm keeping many of its stores open for customers.
As well as that, its opticians business saw sales dive by 72% compared to the same quarter last year as people stayed at home.
Boots said that the cuts represent an “acceleration” of its transformation plans to improve profitably across the business.
Sebastian James, managing director of Boots UK, said: “The proposals announced today are decisive actions to accelerate our transformation plan, allow Boots to continue its vital role as part of the UK health system, and ensure profitable long-term growth.
“I am so very grateful to all our colleagues for their dedication during the last few challenging months.
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“They have stepped forward to support their communities, our customers and the NHS during this time, and I am extremely proud to be serving alongside them.”
“In doing this, we are building a stronger and more modern Boots for our customers, patients and colleagues.
“We recognise that today’s proposals will be very difficult for the remarkable people who make up the heart of our business, and we will do everything in our power to provide the fullest support during this time.”