EMCC European Monitoring Centre on Change



Geographic Location

Country: United Kingdom


Sector: Retail
Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles
47.1 - Retail sale in non-specialised stores
Number Employed: 27000

Employment Effects

Announcement Date: 22-12-2008
Planned Job Reductions min: 27000
Planned Job Reductions max: 27000
Type of Restructuring: Bankruptcy/Closure
Employment Effect Start: 22-12-2008
Foreseen End Date: 05-01-2009
Direct Dismissals: 27000

Additional Information

Woolworths, a UK retailer, has announced the closure of all of its 807 stores in the UK with the loss of 27000 jobs.  All of the stores will be closed by 5 January 2009.  The company entered administration in late November 2008 as it had GBP385 million of debt that it could not pay as credit markets tightened.  The firm was also severely affected by reduced consumer spending during the current economic downturn, and competition from other large retailers.

For further information, see the EIRO report.