Hudson’s Bay Will Follow Through With Job Cuts

Hudson’s Bay Co. (HBC.TO) said it will cut about 2,000 jobs in North America as part of a restructuring plan after it reported a first-quarter loss that widened from last year.

The Canada-based department store operator said the restructuring move will help it save more than C$350 million annually when the plan is fully implemented by the end of fiscal 2018.

The company, which operates Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord & Taylor in the U.S. and Hudson’s Bay in Canada, said the jobs cuts and the transformation plan is the result of a six-month operational review focused on identifying efficiencies, streamlining processes and improving back-of-store productivity in North America.

Hudson’s Bay and other large retailers are struggling amid stiff competition from online retailers and a drop in traffic as customers migrate online.

Hudson’s Bay’s restructuring plan includes the C$75 million in savings announced earlier this year. The company anticipates approximately C$170 million in savings to be realized during fiscal 2017 and expects to incur one-time charges of about C$95 million over the next twelve months.

The retailer established two distinct leadership teams to focus on its Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor department-store chains.

Alison Coville, a nearly two-decade veteran of the company, has been named President of Hudson’s Bay. Liz Rodbell, who previously headed both chains, will continue in her role as President of Lord & Taylor.

For the first quarter, Hudson’s Bay reported a loss of C$221 million or C$1.21 per share, wider than loss of C$97 million or C$0.58 per share in the year-ago period.

Retail sales for the quarter declined 3 percent to C$3.20 billion from C$3.30 billion in the same period last year, primarily due to lower overall comparable sales of about C$94 million.

by RTT Staff Writer

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