Kohl’s Will Eliminate 15% of Its Corporate Staff to Curb Costs

Kohl’s Corp. is slashing its corporate workforce by about 15% in a bid to rein in expenses as retail sales fail to recover to pre-pandemic levels.

The chain said the cuts will save it about $65 million a year. It will record a pretax charge of about $23 million, mostly in the third quarter, related to the layoffs and related cost savings. Kohl’s didn’t say how many workers would be affected.

Retailers across the board have been taking steps to cut costs, especially in the back office, as they grapple with sudden and dramatic changes in consumer spending during the pandemic.Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. said last month it wouldeliminate 2,800 positions across its headquarters and retail stores, while Macy’s Inc. in Juneannounced 3,900 corporate and management job cuts.

The latest move comes after a disappointing second quarter for Kohl’s, which posted a loss of 25 cents a share when excluding some items. Sales were $3.2 billion, a decline of 23% from a year earlier. Analyst Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, said after the earnings report last month that the company’s sales decline demonstrates “that the recovery for some retailers will be prolonged and protracted.”

Kohl’s shares were little changed in late trading in New York.

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