Aurora outsources in major restructure

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Aurora Fashions, which owns Karen Millen, Oasis, Coast and Warehouse, is outsourcing its distribution services and IT functions, as part of a series of changes to its organisational structure.

The company is in exclusive discussions with WT, part of the Toll Group, to outsource its global distribution services, with more than 300 employees expected to transfer to WT.

While Aurora’s IT function is to be outsourced to Retail Assist, with 48 employees set to transfer. With the move, Retail Assist aims to build on the existing shared services and supplier relationships to deliver economies of scale, cost synergies and best practice.

Richard Glanville, CFO of Aurora Fashions, said: “The proposed organisational changes that we’ve announced today are part of the next stage of our strategy. Having appointed managing directors into each of our brands during 2010 this now gives them clear responsibility and accountability for all aspects of their business’ performance.  This structure not only preserves the benefits of scale of our shared services but secures optimal service levels for all our brands both now and in the future. Importantly, it will be achieved without any job losses.”

Mike Shearwood, chief executive of Aurora Fashions, added: “This new structure is very much about growth. It builds on the positive results for the first half announced in November and the anticipated strong outcome for the year as a whole, following an improved performance in the second half, including positive like for like sales over the Christmas trading period.

“Significantly, this new organisational structure reinforces the focus of all the brands on satisfying the needs of their customers.”

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