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H&M to cut 1,500 jobs globally as cost-of-living pressures bite

Fashion retailer H&M is to axe 1,500 jobs as part of a global restructuring programme (Mike Egerton/PA)
Fashion retailer H&M is to axe 1,500 jobs as part of a global restructuring programme (Mike Egerton/PA)

Fashion giant H&M has revealed plans to cut 1,500 jobs globally as the soaring cost of living bites for customers.

The Sweden-based company said the move is part of a “global programme to reduce costs and further improve efficiency in the business”.

It said the cuts will affect the firm’s central operations and will not have an impact on stores.

The restructuring programme is designed to help make savings of two billion Swedish Krona (£158.2 million) each year, from the second half of 2023.

H&M said the cuts are expected to cost the firm 800 million Swedish krona (£63.3 million) this quarter.

The retailer, which also owns the Cos and Monki brands, employs around 155,000 people globally and runs 4,700 stores.

Chief executive Helena Helmersson said: “The cost and efficiency programme that we have initiated involves reviewing our organisation, and we are very mindful of the fact that colleagues will be affected by this.

“We will support our colleagues in finding the best possible solution for their next step.”

Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “Keeping the lights and heating on in vast stores is becoming increasingly unaffordable with energy prices so volatile.

“With shoppers also becoming impressively price-sensitive as cost-of-living headwinds continue to whip up, retailers are finding it more difficult to pass on increases in input costs.

“Shoppers are showing signs of trading down and hunting out bargains, so the pressure is on H&M to compete with chains seen as offering greater value, from Primark in high streets to Boohoo and Shein online.”