Layoffs Reach Convenience

7-Eleven reduces workforce by 10%; "no impact on stores," retailer says

Greg Lindenberg, Editor, CSP

DALLAS -- 7-Eleven Inc. has joined other major retailers such as Macy's, Starbucks, Home Depot and Walgreens among many other companies of all kinds in announcing layoffs due to the economic crisis. Reacting to what it called "unprecedented challenges for businesses and people across North America [that] have caused consumers to curb their spending," the convenience giant announced internally late last Thursday that it is reducing its U.S. and Canadian workforce by approximately 200 positions, or 10% of its non-store, non-operations workforce.

"While 7-Eleven Inc. has fared [image-nocss] better than many other retailers, we have not been immune to the slowdown of the economy," the Dallas-based company said in a statement provided to CSP Daily News and reported in a Flash on Friday.

7-Eleven spokesperson Margaret Chabris told CSP Daily News that the layoffs "have no impact on the stores or the store operations people like our field consultants and market managers, it's more in the non-store and support areas."

She added, "It was done in a very fair way. It was thought through quite well. We had been doing things in advance to manage costs, and hopefully we saved some jobs in the process.... We have to position ourselves for this year."

The company also said in the statement, "The management team made some other difficult decisions for 2009 to minimize further job loss, which include a suspension of merit increases, suspension of 401(k) matches in the U.S. and a reduction of incentive compensation for most positions."

It added, "Despite the reduction, 7-Eleven intends to continue to grow its store base while actively managing costs and providing the product assortment that customers need."

To find out how else 7-Eleven is reacting to the recession, watch today's CSPTV.