Categorized | Beer, News, Spirits, Wines

200 Jobs To Go At WaverleyTBS

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Drinks wholesaler Waverley TBS is to make more than 15 per cent of its workforce redundant after a revamp of its logistics network and telesales operations.

The cuts are the second round of job losses inside six months as the business tries to cope with what it described as “economically challenging conditions”.

Around 200 jobs are expected to be axed following the latest review of the business.

Employees likely to be affected are now in a consultation phase which will last a minimum of 30 days, but could last longer.

A spokeswoman for WaverleyTBS said proposals included the closure of two depots and the creation of two regional distribution centres, one for the North and one for the South of the country. The proposals also included provisions for eight depots and nine new ‘transit points’, taking the number of such ‘stockless depots’ to 10.

Telesales operations, currently regionalised, would be centralised into WaverleyTBS’s Felling call centre in Gateshead.

Meanwhile customer support is understood to be centralised at the group’s Wincanton facility.

The group declined to comment on reports that WaverleyTBS had posted a loss of £14m in 2009.

It would be ‘business as usual’ for WaverleyTBS customers, the spokeswoman added. “This is a restructuring of this part of the company. We’re not expecting any disruption to services to customers.”

The job losses, from a workforce of around 1,300 people, come six months after more than 60 staff lost their positions after a revamp of the group’s independent free trade and national account salesforces.

Jonathan Townsend, managing director at WaverleyTBS, said: “These have been difficult decisions to make and none of them have been entered into lightly.

“The outcome of the review in no way reflects on the performance of affected colleagues who have done an excellent job over the last few years in a very challenging market.

“It is well documented that the drinks sector continues to face some considerable challenges and our business has to evolve to remain sustainable and competitive.”

In a letter to its customers WaverleyTBS said the proposed changes, if put in place, would initially have no or little impact on their relationship, “although later in the year it may mean the contact details you hold for WaverleyTBS will alter”.

The group said it would contact its customers again “if and when those changes begin to take place”.

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Sunday, August 20, 8:54 pm

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