Carphone Warehouse group chief executive Alex Baldock said closing 531 standalone shops at a cost of 2,900 jobs was a “desperately difficult decision to take”.
He told Radio 4’s Today programme: “Carphone Warehouse is losing an unsustainable £90m this year, and if we haven’t acted it would have been significantly worse next year.
“The rates are £20m for those stores, so they don’t make a particular difference here. What we need to do, though, in order to ensure the long-term success of this business is to take the difficult decisions to throw our weight behind the parts of the business that the customers are showing us they want to shop – and that’s with us, that’s with the big stores and that’s online.”
He added: “It’s so important we look after our affected colleagues financially and otherwise, which we intend to do.”