A “Store Closing” banner on a Bed Bath & Beyond store in Farmingdale, New York, on Friday, Jan. 6, 2023.
Johnny Milano | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Bed Bath & Beyond has begun its latest round of layoffs, as it fights to stay in business, according to a memo sent to employees Tuesday that was obtained by CNBC.
The home goods retailer told employees that it is eliminating the chief transformation officer role, which is held by Anu Gupta, on the same day it reported disappointing fiscal third-quarter results.
In the email to employees, CEO Sue Gove said the company is reducing its workforce “across our corporate, supply chain and store portfolio.” She did not say how many employees would be affected, but said it is necessary to ensure Bed Bath’s future.
“While we have taken several important initial steps in our turnaround plan with strong execution, our Q3 2022 results signal that it will take longer to translate actions into outcomes,” she wrote.
Gupta did not immediately respond to a request for comment. In a statement to CNBC, the company said it is “resetting elements of our foundation.”
“As our strategic direction changes and we streamline our operations, it is necessary to right-size our organization to ensure we are equipped for the future. Unfortunately, this has necessitated making the difficult decision to say goodbye to some of our colleagues,” the statement said.
The retailer has been working with advisors in recent months to stave off a bankruptcy filing while its financial position worsened.
Initially, Bed Bath was working with Berkeley Research Group, but opted to replace the firm with AlixPartners recently, said people familiar with the matter, who declined to be named because they weren’t authorized to discuss the matter.
Bed Bath said it doesn’t comment on “specific relationships.” The company instead referred to earlier comments from Gove: “We have a team, internally and externally, with proven experience helping companies successfully navigate complex situations and become stronger. Multiple paths are being explored and we are determining our next steps thoroughly, and in a timely manner.”
AlixPartners declined to comment. A representative for Berkeley Research Group didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Bed Bath & Beyond is approaching a potential bankruptcy, as its sales decline and losses grow. The company’s store shelves have gotten barer as suppliers demand upfront payment, stop shipping goods or change other payment terms. Bed Bath issued a “going concern” warning last week, saying it may run out of funds to cover expenses.
Bed Bath had about 32,000 employees, as of Feb. 26, 2022, according to a company filing.
But since then, the company’s employee count has gotten smaller. In August, it said it would cut about 20% of its corporate and supply chain workforce and close about 150 of its namesake stores.
Earlier Tuesday, Gove told investors that Bed Bath has made progress in reducing its operating expenses and will cut costs by an additional $80 million to $100 million, with some of those savings coming from a reduced workforce.
Gove said in the memo Tuesday that Bed Bath will hold a town hall on Wednesday to discuss its future.
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