Having pulled its support for Phones 4u and ultimately crippled the retailer (with a little help from EE), Vodafone has donned its shining armour and come to the rescue of 887 jobs.
Yep, Big Red has kindly (ahem) snapped up 140 – what were formerly – Phones 4u stores, and announced that the 887 staff members will each be given a brand new Vodafone polo shirt. However, it’s not all good news. More below.
Administrator PwC has announced, sadly, that 628 staff at Phones 4u’s Newcastle HQ will be made redundant.
Rob Hunt, joint administrator, mourns: “It is with great sadness and regret that we have today made the difficult decision to make 628 head office and telesales staff redundant.
"Our thoughts are with those employees at this difficult time. We will make every effort to help the affected staff, working with the Phones 4U HR team over the coming days to support employees."
Meanwhile, Vodafone sounds quite chirpy, announcing: "Our offer was accepted by the administrator and we are pleased to report that approximately 900 former Phones4U employees will keep their jobs and join our dynamic retail business.
"Subject to court approval, we will start engaging with these employees and begin the rebranding of the stores to Vodafone as soon as possible."
Dixons Carphone has picked up a further 800 staff members in its lifeboat, so that’s 1,687 safe, 628 redundant, and 3,281 left up in the air.
EE is said to be interested in grabbing a handful of the remaining 310 Phones 4u stores, though further redundancies seem sadly inevitable.