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Travis Perkins to close 30 UK branches and axe 600 jobs as it warns on profit

Natasha Clark
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Around 28,000 people are employed by Travis Perkins, who will try to relocate some of those affected by job losses (Source: Getty)

Britain's biggest supplier of building materials is to axe 600 jobs and close more than 30 branches due to falling underlying sales.

Travis Perkins said this morning it would not meet its £415 million market expectation for full-year profits, blaming a poor performance for its plumbing and heating division and a lack of demand after the Brexit vote.

The group trades from over 20 businesses, including Wickes and Tile Giant, delivering to both big building firms and DIY-consumers across 2,000 UK stores.

The FTSE 100 firm said it was taking the steps due to an "uncertain UK outlook" for the next year" and that demand was "hard to predict". Its shares are down a quarter this year so far, but total group sales rose 3.4 per cent in the third quarter, with like-for-like sales up 2 per cent.

Read more: Housebuilders stocks hit by fears of hard Brexit

A spokesperson for Travis Perkins said: "Given that levels of future demand remain difficult to predict, the group has chosen to implement a number of efficiency programmes and branch closures to further optimise the network.

"This work includes the closure of 10 smaller distribution and fabrication centres, the write-off of certain IT legacy equipment and over 30 branch closures in our trade businesses."

Last month rival supplier Wolseley said it planned to cut around 800 jobs as part of an overhaul of its UK operations in response to tough competition and weak trading.

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