Dutch supermarkets group Laurus has proposed changes to the store organisation structure of its three formats – Edah, Konmar Superstores and Super de Boer – as part of its previously announced package of measures to make the formats more competitive, leading to the loss of more than 1,200 jobs.

“With margins under pressure from the economic downturn and the continuing supermarket price war, action has to be taken to cut costs,” the company said.

Laurus said tests have been in progress at Edah since the end of 2003 with a flatter store organisational structure, which is more consistent with its chosen positioning as a discount format. The aim is to improve in-store efficiency by deploying staff more flexibly in a broader range of jobs. Organisational changes are expected to result in the loss of 750 jobs at Edah, reducing wage costs by €14m (US$16.6m) a year.

At Super de Boer the emphasis will be on fresh produce. The new structure will mean a reduction in the number of department managers per store and the loss of at least 300 jobs at store-level, saving €7m a year in wage costs.

At Konmar Superstores 240 jobs are to be lost, reducing wage costs by €6m a year.