Lewis ordered to spare the chop
LEWIS Group had been ordered not to retrench any employees from the newly acquired furniture retailer Bears, the Competition Tribunal instructed as part of the merger conditions between the two retailers.
Bears furniture stores, which have been trading in South Africa for more than 80 years, were sold off by Ellerines, which has been put under business rescue due to the collapse of its parent company, African Bank Investment Limited.
In a merger certificate, the tribunal ordered Lewis to invite affected employees and unassigned store employees to apply for the created positions, and any other positions that are or that may become available at the Lewis stores within a period of one year form ap- proval date. Lewis had already indicated that should the merger be approved, it would create 126 job opportunities.
“This will include 63 new positions for the drivers and 63 driver assistants, with each store allocated one driver and one driver assistant,” it said.
The tribunal also ordered that affected employees be allowed to indicate the kind of employment opportunities and geographical locations they were interested in.
Lewis would be also be monitored by the Competition Commission and has been asked to circulate the copy of these conditions to Lewis’ and Bears’ employees and respective representatives with seven days of the approval date. – Nompumelelo Magwaza