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Carphone Warehouse shutters stores, 2,900 redundancies expected

Dixons Carphone has announced that all UK standalone Carphone Warehouse stores will close their doors next month. 

The 531 stores, which represent 8% of Dixons Carphone’s total selling space, will shutter on 3 April 2020.

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The group will now focus on selling mobile devices and connectivity through its shop-in-shops in 305 Currys PCWorld stores and online. 

The parent group of Currys and PCWorld warned that 2,900 redundancies are to be expected in the move as the group’s businesses are “brought together”. 

However, it also expects almost 40% of affected colleagues to take new roles internally.

It pledged to pay enhanced redundancy, bonuses, honour share awards, and help employees find new jobs through an outplacement programme. 

The move comes as the group hopes to “join up its UK Mobile operations with the wider business as customers change how they buy mobile devices, connectivity and technology overall”. 

It said it is the “essential next step” in turning around its UK Mobile business, which is set to make a £90m loss this year, as part of a strategy outlined in December 2018. The group now expects the move to return it to profitability. 

It also said that customers are “increasingly” using the group’s three-in-one stores, where “expert service” will still be available to existing Carphone Warehouse customers going forward. 

Alex Baldock, group chief executive, said: “Customers are changing how they buy technology, and Dixons Carphone must change with them. We’re underway with a fundamental transformation to do so. 

“Today’s tough decision is an essential part of that, the next step in making our UK Mobile business a success for customers, colleagues and other shareholders.” 

He added: “Clearly, with unsustainable losses of £90m expected this year, Mobile is currently holding back the whole business. 

“There’s never an easy time for an announcement like this, but the turbulent times ahead only underline the importance of acting now.” 

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