PC World store to close in nationwide shake-up
An electronics giant is set to close one of its Ashford stores as part of a nationwide shake-up of its operations.
Curry’s PC World currently occupies the 15,000 sq ft store at the Ashford Retail Park in Barrey Road, Sevington.
But staff have reportedly been told that the store will close, and their jobs will be moved to the other Curry’s store on the Gallagher Retail Park, in Norman Road, South Ashford.
The changes are part of a nationwide three-in-one strategy outlined by the parent company Dixons Carphone to combine PC World, Curry’s and Carphone Warehouse stores in single sites.
According to the company’s Christmas trading statement, the plan will result in the closure of 134 stores across the country.
The statement said: “We have decided to launch a major programme to roll this format out across the whole market and put the portfolio into its longterm state.
“We have been doing this on a small scale for some years, and are very confident that the impact on sales and colleague numbers will be neutral or better.
“In addition, our experience shows that colleagues prefer working in, and customers prefer shopping in, our new threein-one format stores.”
The company has set aside £50 million to help refit its stores and a further £70 million for vacating existing property, asset writedowns and other costs.
The company believes its earnings for the next financial year will be modest but reckons £20 million a year will be saved.
Dixons Carphone chief executive Seb James said the company enjoyed a 5% increase in sales at the end of last year, and is set to make a pre-tax profit of £440 million. He added: “We are seeing the benefits of the merger that we expected, and these will roll through into the next year.”
Meanwhile at the Ashford Retail Park, work continues on the second half of the site, with stores such as B&M Bargains, Dreams, Tapi and Costa Coffee set to open in the spring.
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PC World at Ashford Retail Park