MFI quashes rumours of plan to axe 1,000 jobs
Tuesday 02 September 1997
The company has been testing a system of "superwarehouses" under which warehouse space in individual stores is reduced, freeing up more space for retail display. Some City analysts say the company is planning to close many of the warehouses attached to its 180 stores and open a national network of 14 "super-distribution" centres instead.
The company declined to comment yesterday, saying its policy was not to comment on market rumour. MFI is in a closed period ahead of its annual meeting statement on 25 September when it will report current sales figures. The company also declined to comment on speculation that its national distribution centre in Northampton is under threat.
However, it is thought that even the closure of all the in-store warehouse space would not see a huge number of staff lose their jobs. Of MFI's 9,294 employees, 2,595 are employed in manufacturing, 6,086 in retailing and less than 800 in central services, which includes warehousing.
MFI has been gradually re-configuring its store portfolio to focus more on the Homeworks format which includes a broader range of homeware products such as furnishings, textiles and tableware. The stores need smaller warehouses and MFI has either been closing the additional space or letting it out to other retailers.
Analysts believe John Randall, MFI's chief executive, is keen to make MFI a more efficient company. The speculation over its distribution systems comes just weeks after the departure of two directors and the announcement that the retail experiment in Germany is to be abandoned after two and half years.
David Brock, the international director who had been with MFI for more than 20 years, left the company with compensation of pounds 150,000.
Trevor Tellett, the managing director of MFI furniture centres left earlier the same month. He will remain as a consultant for a year and will still be paid his annual salary of pounds 160,000.
At the beginning of July MFI reported that pre-election jitters had left the year's sales and profits disappointingly short of expectations. Mr Randall reported that sales were 5 per cent higher in the first nine weeks of the year against growth of 7 per cent in March.
- 1 Christmas comes early to Hong Kong, as millions of bank notes spill out onto busy street
- 2 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public can visit police’s grisly crime museum
- 4 Vagina canoe artist facing two years in jail defends herself over ‘obscenity’ charges
- 5 The Queen’s speech 2014: Recap and Twitter reaction to Game of Thrones reference
PlayStation and Xbox hacked by Lizard Squad
Antonio Martin shooting: Black teenager may have tried to ambush patrolman, says police officer's lawyer
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
Boxing Day snowfall could push even more bargain-hunters online for Christmas sales
The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public can visit police’s grisly crime museum
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Alex Salmond has 'broken his word to the Scottish people' says Scottish Lib Dem leader
iJobs Money & Business
Highly Competitive: Selby Jennings: Our client, a leading European Oil trading...
£43500 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: Night Shift Operatio...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000 + Car + Pension: SThree: SThree are a ...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35K: SThree: We consistently strive to be the...