The Perfume Shop is latest to shut online ops
AS Watson-owned UK fragrance retailer The Perfume Shop has become the latest major name to shut its online operations on the back of the coronavirus crisis.
The company had already closed its 231 shops on March 22, ahead of the government order to do so, and decided on Tuesday that it's not currently possible to safely run its webstore.
As many as 1,875 staff will be affected by the move, but they will be supported by AS Watson's workforce financial package during the emergency period.
The company said: “For 25 years our talented and passionate colleagues have been at our heart and have always come first and that is why we have taken the decision to temporarily suspend fulfilment of website orders so our warehouse team can follow government advice to stay at home.”
When Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that all shops, except those selling essentials, would have to close, he specifically excluded online stores. And he actively encouraged consumers to continue shopping online.
The problem has been that online delivery slots are difficult to get given the high demand, but also that there have been concerns expressed by workers in distribution hubs over companies’ ability to enforce adequate social distancing and hygiene measures.
Gill Smith, MD of The Perfume Shop, added: “Like everyone we are following government guidelines closely and feel we need to put our colleagues, and their families, first and this means pausing delivery of online orders for the moment. In these uncertain times we remain positive and stand beside our people, loyal customers and community as we all work together to fight the spread of Covid-19.”
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