Heineken incurs losses, lays off 8,000

Dipping sales amidst the pandemic has forced this downsizing

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Heineken, the Dutch brewing company, will be asking about 8,000 employees to leave after having posted net loss of $247 million in 2020. It experienced a dip of 109 per cent in profits as compared to 2019.

The business has suffered from the restrictions imposed by governments amidst the pandemic. The slump in the hospitality sector has only worsened the situation.

In October last year, the brewing company had revealed intentions to cut costs and undertake a major restructuring exercise. However, the exact scale of layoffs had not been made public then. With bars and restaurants having been shut down following the coronavirus outbreak, the Company had taken a decision to streamline its processes in early 2021.

Not even 30 per cent of the outlets are active across Europe right now.

Of the Company’s 85,000-strong global workforce, about 1,700 are based out of its head office and regional offices. About one-fifth of these jobs will be cut, although the exact number is not known yet.

Heineken sells over 300 brands, including its namesake. With many countries across the Europe going through a second wave of the pandemic, bars and eateries remain closed. The hospitalilty sector does not appear anywhere near to recovery yet.

Even though business did seem to be picking up in some countries, a ban on the sale of alcoholic beverages in South Africa, Mexico, Thailand and even India during the COVID crisis took a heavy tool.

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