Quarter of HoF marketers to go in swingeing job cuts

House of Fraser (HoF) is poised to axe up to a quarter of its 20-strong marketing team as it sheds staff following its acquisition by Icelandic investment group Baugur.

The company wants to slash about 150 back-office staff. The cuts are expected to be felt mainly in the human resources, IT and marketing departments. A spokeswoman says cuts in the marketing department will be in the low single figures.

Meanwhile, the chain has denied it is about to launch a pitch for its £3m advertising business. The retailer uses media buyer Starcom MediaVest, and also works with creative agencies such as Hooper Galton and WAA.

A HoF spokesman says cuts have come about as a result of a review carried out before Christmas by new chief executive John King. However, the advertising agencies the company uses will not be changing, he says.

Consultation with staff is underway and a final decision is expected to be announced within three months.

King says: "This will be a difficult time for some of our staff and we are committed to a full consultation process and to supporting staff as much as possible. We have exciting plans for the future, which we hope will create opportunities for staff to grow and develop with us."

HoF has 61 stores throughout the UK, and was bought for £351m by Baugur in November last year. The Baugur-led consortium was headed by Don McCarthy, former Rubicon Retail chief executive.

The new owner is believed to want to cut 20% from the company’s cost base.


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