Pharmacy chain Boots is to cut 4,000 jobs in the UK but stores in the Republic of Ireland are not impacted.The move will affect around 7% of the company’s workforce and will particularly affect staff in its Nottingham support office.
It comes after retail sales tumbled by 48% over the past three months in the face of the pandemic, despite Boots keeping swathes of its stores open to customers.
In a statement, the company said footfall into the stores fell dramatically and its revenue-driving beauty and fragrance counters were closed.
More than 100 larger stores in city centre, station and airport locations were closed, as were the majority of Boots Opticians practices which saw sales dive by 72% compared to the same quarter last year as people stayed at home.
The company said these factors severely impacted comparable retail sales and said the high street will take considerable time to recover.
The announcement came hours after fellow retailer John Lewis announced plans to shut eight stores, in a move which put around 1,300 jobs at risk.