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Sainsbury's' Argos to close all stores in the Republic of Ireland

19th Jan 2023 12:32

(Alliance News) - J Sainsbury PLC's Argos Ltd has announced plans to close all its stores in the Republic of Ireland by this summer, a move that will see hundreds of jobs axed.

The company employs around 580 people in 34 stores in the Republic of Ireland. The hours worked by staff in Ireland equate to 330 full-time roles.

Argos said it arrived at the decision to leave Ireland following a long period of "careful consideration" and a "thorough review" of its business and operations in the country.

The company said it concluded the investment required to develop and modernise the Irish part of its business was "not viable", and that the money would be better invested in other parts of its business.

Argos said it would consult with staff and the trade union Mandate, and offer an "enhanced redundancy package" that goes "well beyond" its statutory obligations.

It said a "small number" of staff not eligible for redundancy under Irish law were set to receive a "one-off goodwill payment".

The company said it was also committed to a programme of wider support to staff over the coming months.

Andy McClelland, Argos Ireland operations manager, said: "We understand this is difficult news for our customers and colleagues.

"As with any major change to our business, we have not made this decision lightly and we are doing everything we can to support those impacted. On behalf of everyone at Argos I would like to thank our colleagues, customers, suppliers and partners for their support to our business."

Argos said its UK operations were "performing well" and were unaffected by the announcement, insisting there would be no change to how it operates in Northern Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales.

The majority of Argos stores will remain open to customers in the Republic of Ireland until June 24.

The retailer will now begin the process of gradually winding down its Irish business and customers in Ireland will no longer be able to pay for orders via the Argos website or place orders via its home delivery service after March 22.

Orders placed up to this date will continue to be fulfilled and customers will still be able to reserve products online and pay for them in store until the point of business closure.

J Sainsbury shares were 1.3% lower at 239.50 pence each on Thursday afternoon in London.

By David Young, PA

Press Association: News

source: PA

Copyright 2023 Alliance News Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

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