Baguette chain could cut up to 5,000 UK jobs

PUBLISHED: 13:06 01 July 2020 | UPDATED: 13:06 01 July 2020

Upper Crust has a branch at Norwich railway station. Photo: Archant

Upper Crust has a branch at Norwich railway station. Photo: Archant

Baguette restaurant Upper Crust, which has an outlet in Norwich railway station, could be facing job cuts as it struggles to cope with the decline in travel.

Owner SSP Group said global sales in April and May were 95pc below last year. It has nearly 600 shops across the UK, mostly at railway stations and airports. Currently fewer than 10 are open.

It has said it could cut up to 5,000 jobs across its UK outlets and head office.

The company expects only one-fifth of its UK stores, which sell baguettes with different fillings as well as pastries, to be open by the autumn. SSP employs around 39,000 staff worldwide across 2,800 outlets. Last month, it said it had suffered “extremely low sales” after the coronavirus pandemic forced it to shut branches.

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And with less people using public transport, and people not looking to grab a snack on the go, the firm has not reopened many of its outlets.

Simon Smith, chief executive of SSP Group, recently said: “Covid-19 has had an unprecedented impact on the travel sector. Our response has been to take quick and decisive action to protect our people and our business.”

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