The Kroger Co.’s divisions this week are evidently in the midst of a widespread restructuring, resulting in what employees indicate could be hundreds of layoffs and reassignments of salaried managers and coordinators.
The changes come as Kroger seeks efficiency improvements and cost reductions as part of its Restock initiative, which among other things, contemplates revamped stores, heavy investment in online shopping capabilities, growth of alternative revenue streams and operating cost reductions of about $1 billion a year.
The Cincinnati-based retailer said last month that it was withdrawing previously announced financial targets of the Restock initiative later this year in light of a combination of industrywide conditions and slower rebounding same-store sales that had slowed progress. Kroger is expected to update its Restock initiatives during an investor event next month.
Company officials did not immediately return requests for comment but Business Insider late Wednesday attributed the following statement to a company spokesperson:
“Store operating divisions are constantly evolving to ensure they build the teams and leaders who will deliver an amazing experience for customers and associates both now and in the future. Store divisions operate independently, but all of them are taking steps to ensure they have the right talent in the right store leadership positions.”
The company did not provide a figure for the number of positions affected, the report added.
The changes were a topic of several online message boards this week, including several threads at TheLayoff.com, which tracks rumors of job actions at companies through worker postings.
Unsubstantiated posts at these sites indicated that various Kroger divisions were restructuring its districts, or groups of stores within its regional divisions, to operate with fewer coordinators. Some stores have also seen reductions in assistant managers and managers, the posts indicated.
Winsight Grocery Business will update this story with additional information as it becomes available.