Marmite and Dove maker Unilever to cut 1,500 jobs worldwide

Consumer goods business has come under increasing pressure from shareholders unhappy with its performance

Ben Chapman
Tuesday 25 January 2022 14:52
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<p>Consumer goods giant Unilever has announced a group-wide overhaul </p>

Consumer goods giant Unilever has announced a group-wide overhaul

Unilever has announced plans to cut 1,500 jobs worldwide as part of a company overhaul.

The producer of hundreds of household-name brands including Dove, Hellman’s mayonnaise and Marmite said the cuts would be focused on management roles.

Unilever has come under increasing pressure from shareholders to improve its financial performance in recent months.

The consumer goods giant employs around 150,000 people globally, including 6,000 in the UK and Ireland. Under new plans announced on Tuesday, around 15 per cent of senior management roles and 5 per cent of junior management roles face the axe.

Job losses will happen across the UK and worldwide, but Unilever did not give a breakdown of where the cuts will be made.

Alan Jope, chief executive of Unilever, said: “Our new organisational model has been developed over the last year and is designed to continue the step-up we are seeing in the performance of our business.

“Moving to five category-focused business groups will enable us to be more responsive to consumer and channel trends, with crystal-clear accountability for delivery.”

Last week, Unilever failed in a £50bn takeover bid for GlaxoSmithKline’s consumer healthcare arm. GSK repeatedly rejected Unilever’s approaches which it said undervalued the business.

On Monday, it emerged that New York-based activist hedge fund Trian Partners, run by billionaire Nelson Peltz, had built up a stake in Unilever.

Unilever said last week it would announce details of a corporate overhaul by the end of January. The company plans to reorganise into five units: beauty and wellbeing, personal care, home care, nutrition, and ice cream.

The company also launched consultations on the job losses and announced a raft of leadership changes for the new divisions, which will take place in April.

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