US: Levis Strauss restructuring to cut 800 jobs
Denim giant Levi Strauss & Co is to cut around 800 jobs as part of a new restructuring programme it hopes will deliver up to US$200m in annual savings.
The global productivity initiative will be executed in phases over the next 12 to 18 months, with the first phase comprising an elimination of 20% of the group's non-retail and non-manufacturing employees.
The cuts, the company said, reflect a reduction of management layers, an increase in spans of control, the removal of duplicative roles, a regrouping of country clusters and other structural changes. Final plans will vary by country, and final numbers, timing and charges are subject to consultative processes.
The first phase is expected to deliver around $75-$100m in annual savings.
In addition to the cuts, Levi said it will look at other areas in order to yield further savings. These will include streamlining the company's product development, planning and go-to-market strategies; implementing supply chain and distribution network efficiencies; adopting lower-cost service-delivery models; and continuing to pursue more disciplined procurement practices.
"Today's announcement reinforces our ongoing commitment to improving the structural economics of the business and further strengthening the financial health of the company," said Chip Bergh, LS&Co president and CEO.
Last month, the company said it would look to focus on a number of key strategies to drive its profitable core in its next fiscal year, after revealing a drop in fourth-quarter earnings and lower gross margin.
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