Laurus is planning to close its Heerenveen regional distribution centre (RDC) with effect from spring 2003. Closure of this RDC is part of the programme of commercial and operational improvements (discussed in the 2001 Annual Report and the Explanatory Memorandum), which are needed to restore the business to profitability.
This action, which is being taken to rectify the structural imbalance in distribution centre (DC) capacity, will result in total savings in the logistic system of â‚¬ 5 million on an annual basis, mainly in premises costs, staff costs and transport costs.
The Central Staff Council has been asked to give its recommendations on this proposal and its repercussions. Talks will be held with the trade unions on a social plan. As many as possible of the 188 permanent staff at the Heerenveen centre will be relocated within the Laurus organisation and the remainder will be given outplacement assistance.
The capacity imbalance between Laurus´ DCs has arisen as a result of the abandonment of the single-format strategy (conversion to the Konmar format in 2001, for which the logistical structure had been redesigned), the sale of a number of stores to (among others) Sperwer, leading to overcapacity mainly at the DCs in the north of the country. Closure of the Heerenveen location will reduce this overcapacity and give more uniform geographical coverage by the DCs. After the closure of the Heerenveen centre, Laurus will have a total of ten DCs: Beilen, Hoogeveen, Waddinxveen/Nieuw Vennep, Hoofddorp, The Hague, Den Bosch, Veenendaal/Renswoude, Someren, Apeldoorn and Heerenveen (frozen food).