Last week it was John Lewis making the headlines with news of job cuts – today it’s Tesco stealing the retail column inches for similar reasons.

The supermarket giant is axing 1,700 deputy manager positions across its Express c-store estate and creating 3,300 lower-paid shift leader roles in their place.

Tesco said the changes form part of its drive to improve customer service by having “more of our colleagues on the shopfloor, more often”.

The grocer has already restructured teams in its larger supermarkets in a similar way, of course, stripping out a layer of management in favour of investing in a higher net number of jobs. 

That strategy, while painful at the time for the business and the affected employees, has ultimately paid dividends for Tesco’s top and bottom lines.

Britain’s biggest retailer will hope it proves to be another case of short-term pain for long-term gain, as businesses continue to adapt to structural shifts across the industry.

Tesco’s big four rival Morrisons shared more upbeat news as its Nutmeg clothing label expanded into womenswear, but the grocer was not the only retailer making a splash in the world of fashion today.

Primark revealed a spike in half-year sales in a pre-close update, while Sports Direct reportedly lodged a bid for Agent Provocateur.

Quote of the day

“The reality is that business rates are a ticking time bomb. It cannot be right for smaller town centre retailers to be facing massive hikes while the Amazons and Asoss of this world have their business rates cut.”
– Labour shadow business secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey has her say on the business rates revaluation.

Today in numbers


The value of the bid that Sports Direct has reportedly tabled for Agent Provocateur.  


McColl’s pre-tax profit during the year ending November 27, 2016. 

Tomorrow’s agenda

South African conglomerate Steinhoff posts its first-quarter update tomorrow, which should bring details of Poundland’s current trading performance.

Luke Tugby, deputy news editor