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Wolseley axing 84 staff due to downturn

Wolseley is axing a total of 84 jobs in the UK as it looks to increase efficiency in the face of the growing pressure on the economy.

The heating and plumbing products distributor is making 73 staff redundant at Wolseley’s UK headquarters in Royal Leamington Spa with another 11 redundancies in its Ripon office.

Rob Marchbank, chief executive for Europe and Managing Director Wolseley UK, said: “Given the deterioration in several of our markets, including the UK, we have continued to take action to reduce duplication and make cost savings across our operations.

“The review focused on driving greater emphasis on serving the customer with empowered branches, balanced with the appropriate central support structures which the business can afford.

”I am confident that today’s changes, along with the recent establishment of our new divisional structure, will ensure we emerge from the current economic challenges equipped to successfully compete in our marketplaces.”

Wolseley is under increasing financial pressure due to a sharp drop in profits.

In July the company reported trading profit for the 11 months to the end of June in the UK and Ireland was down 17 per cent as new housing in the UK slowed significantly.

The latest job cuts follow a major overhaul of the group’s management structure in the UK with the establishment of three new divisionsi n August - Lightside, Heavyside and Commercial and Industrial.

This led on to a comprehensive review of the supporting Head Office structures. A period of consultation has been launched on the redundancies.