Department store de Bijenkorf to merge its distribution centers, 143 employees to lose their jobs

Dutch department store de Bijenkorf announced on 11 January that it will close its distribution center in Woerden. As a result, 143 employees will lose their jobs.



de Bijenkorf Amsterdam - Photo: de Bijenkorf

De Bijenkorf is currently in talks with Ingram Micro, who currently distributes e-store sales for the chain. From mid-2019 onwards, all distribution activities will be merged at a new center and most likely outsourced to Ingram Micro.

The department chain cites better and faster customer service as the reason to merge its distribution activities in one place. In addition, the new distribution center promises to be more sustainable in terms of consumption of materials, CO2 emissions and working environment.

Giovanni Colauto, CEO at de Bijenkorf, said in a statement: “It was a difficult decision to take, because it means that we have to part ways with colleagues. That is why we carefully weighed various options. The intended decision is based on the conviction that this [move] is necessary in order to remain successful in the future as an omni-channel retailer.

De Bijenkorf’s new distribution center will be located in either Waalwijk or Tilburg, a region that has historically contributed to the Dutch textile and footwear industries.

Although the initial closing of the current distribution center will affect jobs, de Bijenkorf expects employment in the new center to eventually increase to 800 jobs, that is, 300 more opportunities than the current total of 500 jobs at the two distribution centers that the department store currently operates. 

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