World News

Blokker Holding to close 200 stores and sell toy chains

Published on: May 17th, 2017

Company will also cut just under 9% of its workforce to focus on its household goods stores.

BlokkerBlokker, the operator of several Dutch chain stores, made the announcement on Tuesday 16th May. The changes would lead to 1,900 job losses out of the privately-held company’s 21,700 employees over the coming two years.

The chains Intertoys and Maxi Toys, Asian goods importer Xenos, discounter Big Bazar and furniture outlet Leen Bakker, representing another 13,500 employees in the Netherlands and neighbouring countries, mostly Belgium, are up for sale, the company said.

Blokker lost 52 million euros ($57 million) on sales of 2.01 billion euros in 2015, the most recent period it has released figures for.

Blokker chief executive Caspar Meijer commented: “We realise only too well that this announcement will have a major impact on our staff. We are convinced our other retail formats have a promising future ahead with a new owner.”

Blokker began overhauling its high-street Blokker stores over a year ago and has been attempting to shore up profitability since 2014. The switch to the new look Blokker will continue in popular locations, as will the online shop blocker.nl.

The Blokker group currently has seven retail formats in eight countries, with a total workforce of some 22,000. The company is due to publish its 2016 results next month.

If you would like to receive our daily newsflash email, click here; you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook and request a print subscription here.