In a move to focus its resources on its “orange box” stores, The Home Depot is exiting its EXPO business and taking steps to streamline its support functions, resulting in the loss of 7,000 jobs, or approximately 2% of the company’s total work force.
Over the next two months, the company will close 34 EXPO Design Center stores, five YardBIRDS stores, two Design Center stores and a bath remodeling business known as HD Bath, with seven locations. These steps will affect approximately 5,000 associates in those locations, their support functions and their distribution centers.
Even during the housing boom, EXPO was not a strong business, according to a statement from the company. Sales weakened significantly in the current economic environment as the demand for big ticket design and décor projects declined.
The Home Depot also is restructuring support functions to better align its cost structure with the current economic environment. This will include continuing to shift to a region- and district- based support model in various field functions and reducing headcount in administrative functions in the company’s store support centers. These support reductions will affect approximately 2,000 associates.