Countrywide says it is unable to comment on speculation that some Bairstow Eves offices in the south of England have been told that they are amongst the latest closures to be announced by the troubled company.
Estate Agent Today has been contacted with details of specific branches which have allegedly been told that they will close by the end of this year. Their staff were apparently informed of the decision last Friday December 2, although Countrywide is declining to confirm or deny that.
In a statement to EAT about the Bairstow Eves closures a Countrywide spokesperson said: “Following changes to our Retail and London businesses, on Friday 2nd we updated colleagues on the next phase of change which includes streamlining our branch footprint and strengthening our regional management structure. We are unable to provide any specific details because it is an ongoing formal consultation process and not final. However, as always, we remain committed to working with colleagues to ensure that those who wish to be redeployed are supported in doing so.”
In an earlier ‘streamlining of the branch footprint’ at the end of the summer, Countrywide closed approaching 60 branches.
After some two years of reorganisation and high profile departures, the latest changes confirmed last week involved the outsourcing of some back office tasks across the Countrywide group, a de-layering of management, a re-shaping of the regional structure and conveyancing services, and redundancies in a sales support centre in Lancashire.
Last week it was confirmed that Countrywide’s share listing on the London Stock Exchange had dropped out of the FTSE-250. Its share price has rallied from a recent low of 168.9 and yesterday it closed at 178.0. In spring 2014 it reached a high of 686.50.