Travis Perkins are set to close 165 stores and cut 2,500 jobs as they are expecting a recession to hit the trade for two-years.
The company who also owns Wickes and Toolstation said they are focusing on smaller sites, but said there are also encouraging signs over the building trade.
Chief executive Nick Roberts said, “Whilst we have experienced improving trends more recently, we do not expect a return to pre-Covid trading conditions for some time and consequently we have had to take the very difficult decision to begin consultations on the closure of selected branches and to reduce our workforce to ensure we can protect the Group as a whole.
“This is in no way a reflection on those employees impacted and we will do everything we can to support them during this process.”
Travis Perkins added, “While there has been a significant recovery in trading volumes in recent weeks, it is evident that the UK is facing a recession and this will have a corresponding impact on the demand for building materials during 2020 and 2021.
“Branch closures will be concentrated in the Merchant businesses, in particular the Travis Perkins General Merchant, focusing on small branches where it is either difficult to implement safe distancing practices, or where marginal profitability will be eroded in a reduced volume environment.”