May 28, 2019
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Boots plans to to close 200+ stores - report

May 28, 2019

UK health and beauty retail giant Boots could be the latest name to close large numbers of stores with a report on Tuesday that its American owner, Walgreens Boots Alliance, is reviewing the viability of more than 200 of its stores with a view to closing them over the next two years.

Boots could close more than 200 stores

The company hasn't commented on the report by Sky News but sources close to it did acknowledge that a significant number of shops could close, even though they also said that no specific decisions have yet been made.

WBA had said last month that it was reviewing its Boots store estate and seeking opportunities for consolidating branches and axeing underperforming locations, but it didn’t specify a number at the time.

Some sites are likely to close as their leases end while others could close earlier as the company seeks to rationalise in towns with two branches.

The move comes as consumers are increasingly move online when buying beauty products, although the giant store network does support Boots’ online ops as it acts as a major click & collect hub for orders. 

But with 2,500 stores and 56,000 staff, the company clearly sees potential for saving money with this new plan.

It would be interesting to see how it goes about exiting stores not close to the end of their leases as the company wouldn’t be eligible for a CVA, due to the fact that it’s still a profitable and solvent business, even though its profits have been falling.

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