Aston Martin isn't the only British luxury marque facing struggles during the pandemic. Bentley is also going through great difficulty during these unprecedented times.
In a recent report by Reuters, the Crewe-based luxury brand is looking to cut 1,000 jobs; a big figure for a bespoke automaker. Bentley said that the planned cutting of its workforce is voluntary, with the financial benefits of the offer to be based on years of service, age, and salary. However, the company did say that they have yet to rule out compulsory redundancies.
“This is a necessary step that we have to take to safeguard the jobs of the vast majority who will remain, and deliver a sustainable business model for the future. COVID-19 has not been the cause of this measure but a hastener,” said Adrian Hallmark, Chairman, and CEO of Bentley.
With the company only resuming work at the Crewe factory last May 11, the luxury brand lost a sizable amount of revenue during its near two-month closure. In fact, British new car sales were down by 89% in May, which is slightly better compared to April which saw the worst figures: they're down by 97%. Further compounding Bentley's problems is their production volume. Since they roll out cars in limited numbers, the two-month closure hit them harder than most mainstream automakers.
Bentley has announced that those that will be let go will be provided with financial support in order to seek a new job elsewhere. The brand also mentioned that with their current target figures no longer feasible, they will have to readjust costs and investment plans for the foreseeable future.
Even under the wing of the Volkswagen Auto Group, Bentley's current difficulties reminds us that all industries aren't spared from the impact of the pandemic. At the time of writing, Bentley has well over 3,000 personnel under their wing. With 1,000 about to be cut, that represents nearly one-third of their employees.