Pizza Express to cut 1,100 jobs

Pizza Express will be axing 1,300 jobs as it prepares itself for a second wave.

The high-street restaurant has already cut 1,100 jobs since August when it closed 73 of its restaurants.

Since August, Pizza Express will have cut a total of 2,400 jobs – a quarter of its workforce.

Pizza Express managing director Zoe Bowley said: “Our aim throughout these extremely challenging times has been to keep our team members and customers safe, and to retain jobs for as long as possible.

“As a leading employer in our sector, we see every day how this pandemic is having a profound impact on our industry, our business and on people’s lives.

“Unfortunately, the recent increase in COVID-19 cases is again causing footfall to decline across the UK. As this is expected to continue for some months, we sadly need to make changes that will impact more of our team members.

“Our people remain at the heart of our business and we are doing what we can to support those who are affected.

“We believe that this difficult decision will give us more resilience through the next six months and help us to continue serving our customers in our restaurants and at home in the years ahead.”

Whilst suburban and out-of-town sites have continued to perform well, the chain said that city-centre sites have been hit hard and fewer people are dining in since the pandemic.

Pizza Express is majority-owned by Chinese investor Hony Capital. It bought the chain for £900m in 2014.