Yesterday, Levi Strauss & Co. (LS&Co.) announced a "global productivity initiative" to be executed in phases over the next 12 to 18 months. The initiative shall generate annualized cost savings of USD 175-200 million and includes the elimination of approximately 800 positions.
This resembles a cut of almost 20% of LS&Co.’s non-retail and non-manufacturing employee population. The axing of jobs shall be caught up by “a reduction of management layers, an increase in spans of control, the removal of duplicative roles, a regrouping of country clusters and other structural changes”, as stated in a corporate press release.
For the time being, the final headcounts, timings and changes are not hundred percent certain, but will be subject to completion of applicable local works councils and the like.

Over the time of the productivity initiative, LS&Co. will also plans to streamline the company’s product development, planning and go-to market strategies, making the company’s supply chain and distribution more efficient and “adopt lower-cost service-delivery models”.

Chip Bergh, LS&Co. president and chief executive officer: “These changes will make us more competitive—both in our cost structure and in the marketplace—improving our agility and enabling us to focus on innovation, retail productivity, omni-channel capabilities and enhanced consumer experience in stores.”

During the past 18 months, LS&Co. has registered several staff losses and changes on management level and speculations on the future of headquarters like the Levi’s Germany branch have been kicked off.