National Living Wage costing jobs in c-store sector, says ACS

13 September 2017

More than 20,000 jobs have disappeared from the convenience store sector in the past year, new data have revealed.

The 2017 Local Shop Report, compiled by the Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) shows that there are now just over 370,000 jobs in the sector - a reduction on both last year’s total of 390,000 and 2015’s total of 407,000.

ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “Convenience stores provide flexible employment for over 370,000 people across the UK, but this number has fallen as a result of significant increases in the National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage, as well as other associated employment costs, alongside rising costs in other areas like business rates. In many cases, store owners are having to reduce the number of hours that their staff work whilst picking up extra hours themselves.”

Key findings from this year’s report include:

  • There are 49,918 convenience stores in mainland UK, 74% of which are run by independent retailers, either on their own or in partnership with a symbol group
  • Sales have risen by £500m in the past year to £38bn – which makes this sector of the economy comparable in scale to other large UK sectors like recruitment, defence, and energy
  • C-store retailers have invested over £858m in the last year on improving their stores, extending the range of services available to customers and making their businesses more efficient