By Hannah Riordan
Employees at Leeds based superstore Asda left in resentment after being given no prior warning about Sainsbury’s merge.
It has been announced today that the second and third leading supermarkets, Asda and Sainsbury’s plan to merge into a single retailing store.
Speculation and uncertainty is rife among the public as well as Asda employees, who have raised their concerns to their worker union GMB about the lack of information provided prior to the public announcement.
Tim Roache, GMB General Secretary said, “The events of the last few days have left a bitter taste in the mouth of ASDA workers”
Roache said, “Imagine turning up to your Saturday afternoon shift only to learn this news, with no word from your employer at all – just speculation in the media. Our members are concerned for their futures and angry they’ve been left in the dark.”
Many Asda workers have already consented to alter their contracts in order to be more adaptable in their working role and to help their employer be more profitable.
The union GMB are demanding reassurance for Asda workers, Roache added, “they need and deserve answers and reassurances about their future”.
The Asda head office in Leeds also faces uncertainty in the aftermath of the merge, potential closure of the head office looms as it may be combined with Sainsbury’s head office and reformed elsewhere.
Predictions made by analysts propose the merging of Sainsbury’s and Asda could replace the current leading supermarket Tesco, and would create the highest combined market shares of all supermarkets.
Asda’s press office released in their statement, “The combination of Asda and Sainsbury’s will be great news for for Asda customers, allowing us to deliver even lower prices in store and even greater choice.”
Asda chief executive Roger Burnley, who is originally from Leeds, told The Sun, “Asda will continue to be Asda, but by coming together with Sainsbury’s, supported by Walmart, we can further accelerate our existing strategy and make our offer even more compelling and competitive.”
The decision was made due to the increasing competition from discounters such as Lidl and Aldi taking market shares from the larger supermarkets such as Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, and Tesco.