Coronavirus: 4,400 jobs at risk at two more popular UK high street places

Lianna Brinded
·Head of Yahoo Finance UK
·2-min read
Rent-to-own firms like Bright House. Photo: Dinendra Haria/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Rent-to-own firms like Bright House. Photo: Dinendra Haria/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The coronavirus pandemic has led to another 4,400 jobs at risk as two popular UK high street staples struggle with the lockdown.

In the last 24 hours, rent-to-own high street giant BrightHouse and Italian restaurant chain Carluccio's are said to be close to collapse.

According to the BBC, Bright House, which has 200,000 customers and is the largest operator in the rent-to-own sector, is expected to fall into administration on Monday 30 March, putting 2,400 jobs at risk in the process.

The report says that an influx of compensation claims for selling to people who could not repay has pushed Bright House in its current position. The company did not immediately respond to Yahoo Finance UK’s requests for comment by the time of publication.

Meanwhile, 2,000 jobs are at risk as Carluccio's faces collapse as it is poised to permanently close a number of branches. The restaurant’s administrator FRP told the BBC, "FRP is working with the directors of Carluccio's to consider all options for the company in the current climate.”

Carluccio's Chief Executive Mark Jones told the BBC, the restaurant "was days away from large-scale closures" without state help, prior to the UK government’s promise to pay 80% of workers’ wages of up to £2,500 ($3,113) per month.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: UK unemployment 'worst since 2015' as jobs boom stalls

Britain is currently on lockdown — with strict restrictions placed on the movements of the public. There are now 14,543 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK. As of Friday, the number of people who have died with the virus in the UK rose by 181 to 759.

The lockdown has meant that only essential stores — such as supermarkets and pharmacies — are open to the public. This has meant that businesses have had to close and thousands of jobs are at risk.

New figures showed that Britain’s jobs boom is grinding to a halt under the weight of the coronavirus.

Recent years have seen employment hit a record high, in what some have called a “jobs miracle.” But analysts say UK unemployment may now have soared to its highest in almost five years, after just under half a million applications for the universal credit benefit in just nine days.

It comes amid warnings Britain could face the worst recession in modern history, as the coronavirus and government lockdown to contain it paralyse the economy.