As many as 1,300 jobs are at risk as Morrisons has announced plans to close 132 loss-making McColl’s stores across the UK.
The supermarket chain bought McColl’s for £190m ($218m) earlier this year after it fell into administration. However, it now plans to axe those “where there is no realistic prospect of achieving a breakeven position in the medium term”.
The Bradford-based grocer said it expects some McColl’s stores to return to profitability as part of its turnaround plans, and confirmed that all staff members at risk would be offered roles elsewhere in the company.
It now plans to convert all its remaining McColl’s stores into Morrisons Daily shops in a bid to return to growth.
Some 55 of the 132 closing outlets include Post Office counters and will therefore shut next year, following their busy Christmas period.
The move comes just days after competition regulators said that Morrisons could complete the takeover.
“We have a great deal of work to do but there’s no question that McColl’s is a business with strong potential,” Joseph Sutton, Morrisons’ convenience, online and wholesale director, said.
“I’m confident that the combination of McColl’s conveniently located stores and great colleagues, together with Morrisons scale, brand, systems and fresh food expertise, will lead to a transformation of the business.
“We very much regret the proposed closure of 132 loss-making stores but it is, very sadly, an important step towards the regeneration of the business.