Retail Solutions - Littlewoods faces IT staff cull

Home shopping specialist Littlewoods has revealed that it is to slash its IT staff headcount by a sixth.

The announcement follows a deal in May, brokered by Littlewoods owners the Barclay brothers, to acquire GUS Catalogues for£590 million. At the time, pundits predicted that job losses would follow.

In a prepared statement, Littlewoods said: 'At present there are 360 IT employees. We will reduce this headcount by 60 before the end of the year and, wherever possible, seek to achieve losses on a voluntary basis.'

The retailer also made it clear that the redundancies were because of a slowdown in IT activity, rather than a need to cut costs.

It said: 'Littlewoods has benefited from a period of substantial investment in IT in order to deliver key projects to support and improve the infrastructure of the business.

'Because these projects have now been delivered, it is appropriate to refocus the business area.'

Littlewoods confirmed that it has no plans to make any further redundancies from its IT team in the new year.