Shop Direct has moved to reassert its commitment to the North West despite revealing it is to open a new London office next year employing 250 staff across data, ecommerce, IT, product and brand.
The Liverpool-based retailer is to open a 25,000 sq ft space at 111 Buckingham Palace Road, with the workforce comprising a mix of new hires, existing staff, and some who will split their time between London and the company’s head office in Speke.
It said the new hub will play an “important role in delivering and maximising some of the company’s growth initiatives, including its investment in advanced analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence”.
It will also be home to the VeryExclusive team, currently based in Shop Direct’s press showroom in Mayfair. Shop Direct also operates Very.co.uk and Littlewoods.com.
He said: “We’re proud of our Liverpool heritage and home, and employ over 2,000 people in the region. We’ve been able to attract and retain some of the world’s best talent in Merseyside and will continue to do so.
“Our new London hub will support our Liverpool HQ by expanding our existing presence in the capital. The functions based in London will continue to be led from our head office.”
Alex Baldock, group CEO at Shop Direct, said the new London presence would help the company to “forge important new partnerships”.
“We need to keep innovating to meet the ever-changing needs of our customer. That’s why we’re opening this fantastic new hub. The new space will reflect everything we stand for and are striving for,” he said.
“It’ll help us attract even more of the best people and get even closer to our existing partners, as well as forge important new partnerships.
“There’s lots of work to do before we open, but I can’t wait to see the collaborative, digital workspace we’ll create.”
Shop Direct has recently reported a fourth consecutive year of record sales and underlying pre-tax profit, growing PBT by 43.6% to £150.4m and sales by 4.3% to £1.86bn in the 53 weeks to the end of June 2016.