Woolworths billion-dollar corporate restructure will see 500 jobs lost
Woolworths has revealed that 500 jobs will go in its back office and supply operations as part of a $1 billion overhaul of its business in the face of stiff competition in the retail sector.
The retailer announced that 30 stores will close, including 17 supermarkets in Australia, six in New Zealand, four Woolworths metro stores and three hotels - all expected to shut before the end of the current financial year.
A further 34 stores across its broad portfolio are rated as underperforming and where Woolworths said there is "currently significant uncertainty around whether we would renew the lease at the end of the lease term".
This includes 15 supermarkets in Australia and five metro stores; the supermarket also plans to close its Hume Distribution Centre in Victoria in 2019. 1,000 workers will be moved from head office into the company's business units.
Woolworths chief executive Brad Banducci said: "We are confident we are putting in place solid foundations for the future and early results give us confidence we are on the right track," he said in a statement.
"This will be a three to five-year journey and we are determined to drive sustainable improvements."
"Most importantly we are deliberately slowing down the future pipeline of store openings and investing the capital we might have put in store openings into store renewals,"
Woolworths does expect to make a pre-tax profit for 2016 of between $2.5 and $2.57 billion, but that does not include the nearly $1 billion in one-off write-downs.
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Timeline: India takes unicorn leap with six in five days
We chart an historic week in India’s tech industry, where in just five days, between 5-9 April 2021, the country achieved six new unicorns, bringing India’s total to 10 in 2021 to date, an immense unicorn leap from just seven in 2020 and six in 2019.
April 5: Meesho
India’s first social commerce unicorn, Meesho raised US$300m from SoftBank, Facebook and Shunwei Capital, giving the Bangalore-based startup a US$2.1bn valuation, a threefold jump from its previous funding round in 2019. Founded in 2015 by two IIT-Delhi graduates, Meesho connects producers and resellers, helping small businesses sell through social media. It has 45m customers and has enabled 13m entrepreneurs to start their online businesses with no investment.
April 6: CRED
Founded just over two years ago, Bangalore-based credit card repayment app CRED raised US$215m from Falcon Edge Capital and Coatue, nearly trebling its valuation to US$2.2bn from its January US$80m round. Allowing customers to pay off their credit card debt while earning CRED coins which they cash in for rewards, CRED has grown rapidly during COVID-19, doubling its customer base to nearly 6 million in a year.
April 7: API Holdings / Groww
The first epharmacy startup to gain unicorn status, PharmEasy (API Holdings), which has digitised 60,000 brick and mortar pharmacies and 400 doctors across India, raised US$350m in a round led by Prosus Ventures. Founded by four former Flipkart employees as a way of making investing simple, investment platform Groww became India’s second-youngest fintech unicorn, raising US$83m in Series D funding led by Tiger Global, quadrupling its previous round in September.
April 8: ShareChat
New Delhi-grown social media startup ShareChat, founded in 2016 by Mohalla Tech raised US$502m from Lightspeed Ventures, Tiger Global, Twitter and Snap taking its raised total over six rounds to US$766m and pushing its valuation to US$2.1bn. The funding will be used to grow its user base and short video platform Moj, which launched in 2020 following TikTok’s ban in India. The regional language startup claims 280m users.
April 9: Gupshup
AI-led conversational message startup joined the unicorn club after raising US$100m from Tiger Global giving it a ten-fold valuation of US$1.4bn. The smart messaging platform, which has seen accelerated growth during the pandemic, was founded in Bangalore in 2005 by serial entrepreneur Beerud Sheth, whose online freelancing platform Elance is now listed. Gupshup’s API enables 100,000+ businesses to build messaging and conversation experiences across 30+ communication channels.