Rapha cuts HQ jobs in cost-cutting plan
British upmarket cycling brand Rapha has laid off a number of employees in an effort to reduce costs. The move comes a little over a year after the brand was acquired by the grandsons of Walmart founder Sam Walton in a £200m sale.
A spokesperson for the brand said 15 members of staff have been laid off, however a former employee told The Daily Telegraph that the number of redundancies reached between 60 and 70. Another person close to the matter put the figure closer to 80.
Rapha, whose performance cycling jerseys can cost up to £250, had recently seen the departure of chief financial officer Emilio Foa.
The redundancies follow a series of heavily discounted sales during the summer, a period that is traditionally strong for cycling brands. Many Rapha items have also been listed on SportPursuit, a discount clothing site.
A company spokesperson said: “As we entered 2018, we adjusted our trading strategy, prioritising long-term profitable growth above short-term sales. As part of this, we are simplifying certain areas of the business, in order to reduce costs, and consolidate and strengthen our position. These actions will result in the reduction of a limited number of positions in our London headquarters.”
Founded in 2004 by cycling enthusiast Simon Mottram, Rapha became a popular cycling brand for its premium performance clothing and clubhouse store concept which combines a retail store, café and meeting point for the Rapha Cycling Club.
The brand was sold to Walmart heirs Steuart and Tom Walton for a £200m last year following a bidding war which also attracted interest from luxury goods group LVMH.
Last year, the company increased turnover from £48.8m to £67.1m, while pre-tax profit was £1.4m.
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