Thursday, 29 Oct 2020

Premier Inn owner announces it is scrapping up to 6,000 jobs

The Daily Star’s FREE newsletter is spectacular! Sign up today for the best stories straight to your inbox

The owner of hotel chain Premier Inn has warned it could axe up to 6,000 jobs.

Coronavirus has wreaked havoc on the hospitality sector, significantly reducing demand for hotel stays.

Whitbread said it had begun consultations with staff, and hoped the majority of the proposed cuts could be made voluntarily.

The company – which also owns Brewers Fayre restaurants and Beefeater pubs – said that sales had fallen by almost 80% after lockdown.

It said in a statement: "With market demand expected to remain at lower levels in the short to medium-term, we have now taken the very difficult decision to announce our intention to enter into consultation on proposals that could result in up to 6,000 redundancies for our hotel and restaurant colleagues (representing 18% of our total workforce).

"We expect a significant proportion of these redundancies to be achieved voluntarily.

"Our priority now is to ensure that the process is fair and that impacted colleagues are supported throughout."

The company added: "This is a regrettable but necessary step to ensure that we emerge from the crisis with a lower cost base, a more flexible operating model and a stronger more resilient business."

The plans come as the government's furlough scheme comes to an end next month.

  • Body of well-known paraglider found in mountains after weeks of searching

The job losses were also announced on top of cuts to reduce Whitbread's head office workforce by up to a fifth.

In May, Whitbread got £600 million in funding using the Bank of England’s coronavirus corporate financing scheme.

The firm also furloughed 27,000 of its 35,000 employees.

NHS hospital staff were put up in Premier Inns between shifts during the height of the pandemic.

Chief executive Alison Brittain added: “With demand for travel remaining subdued, we are now having to make some very difficult decisions, and it is with great regret that today we are announcing our intention to enter into a consultation process that could result in up to 6,000 redundancies in the UK, of which it is hoped that a significant proportion can be achieved voluntarily."

  • Coronavirus

Source: Read Full Article