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High street pharmacy chain Boots has said it expects to cut more than 4,000 jobs in a bit to tackle the “significant impact” of Covid-19.
The move will affect around 7% of the company’s workforce, bosses said.
Meanwhile, 48 Boots Opticians stores will be closed as part of the restructuring plans.
The news about job cuts at Boots came on the same day John Lewis revealed it would permanently close eight stores, putting 1,300 jobs at risk.
The closures include two full-size department stores in Birmingham and Watford amid a reported shift to online sales.
Cuts by the two high street giants follow redundancies at a number of other companies.
The decision by Boots to cut jobs came after retail sales tumbled by 48% during lockdown, despite the chain keeping swathes of its stores open to customers.
Meanwhile, its opticians business saw sales dive by 72% compared to the same quarter last year as people stayed at home.
Boots said that the cuts represent an “acceleration” of its transformation plans to improve profitably across the business.
Managing director Sebastian James said: “The proposals announced today are decisive actions to accelerate our transformation plan, allow Boots to continue its vital role as part of the UK health system, and ensure profitable long-term growth.
“I am so very grateful to all our colleagues for their dedication during the last few challenging months.
“They have stepped forward to support their communities, our customers and the NHS during this time, and I am extremely proud to be serving alongside them.”
“In doing this, we are building a stronger and more modern Boots for our customers, patients and colleagues.
“We recognise that today’s proposals will...