Retail news round-up: Argos agency workers to receive bonus for not calling in sick; Staples nears rescue deal

Argos agency workers to get 80p an hour bonus

Argos workers have been offered an 80p an hour bonus if they don't call in sick before Christmas, The Independent reported.

However, employment lawyers have warned the move could lead to “indirect disability discrimination”.

Argos informed its warehouse workers in Basildon that they will not receive the bonus if they call in ill once in any single week in the run-up to Christmas.

The retailer said: “We do not tolerate discrimination and fully comply with the Disability Discrimination Act.

“Reasons for non-attendance that could impact on the bonus terms would be considered on a case-by-case basis.”

The bonus is applicable for temporary agency workers employed for Argos by agencies across all its distribution centres.

Staples stores nearing rescue deal

Investment firm Cerberus is negotiating a rescue deal to acquire shops owned by Staples across Europe, The Telegraph reported.

The acquisition is speculated to include the company’s UK high-street sites; however, there are questions being asked as to whether Cerberus will keep the stores open.

In the year to the end of January 2015, Staples UK retail operations reported £4.2m of losses on £220m of sales. However, it also owns an online arm and a business-to-business division in the UK, which are profitable.

Authorities stopped a $6bn (£4.9bn) merger deal with rival Office Depot earlier this year.