GERMANY: C&A To Close Eight Stores
Closure-hit fashion retailer, C&A, has announced it is closing eight stores in Germany, one distribution centre and one warehouse. C&A revealed in June that it was shutting all its British and Irish shops after more than 75 years in business in this country. Now the Dutch-owned clothing chain is to scale down its operations in Germany, which reportedly account for around 50 per cent of its European turnover. The company say no jobs will be lost and about 500 employees will be moved to other positions or offered early retirement. Thorsten Rolfes, a spokesman for C&A Mode, the group's German arm said: "We have looked at where we are profitable and where we have problems. "We have decided who our core customers are and we are now focusing on them." The company has not said which German stores will close. Most of C&A's UK stores will close by January, with two or three staying open for a little longer, said Chris Williams, Head of Corporate Communications for C&A in the UK. "By summer, there will be no C&A in the UK," he said. C&A, with a presence in 12 countries, announced a few months ago that it had decided to reverse its move into centralised buying, with management structures being simplified so that country directors assume more responsibility for performance and for ensuring that buying and selling reflects local needs. In a statement issued by the company at the time, C&A said that it needed to consolidate and grow its market in mainland Europe. The announcement that it is to close eight of its German stores is a further example that it is looking closely at its customers and focusing even more carefully on them.
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