DICKSON RESTRUCTURE LEADS TO 117 LAYOFFS

Byline: Vicki M. Young

NEW YORK — Dickson Concepts Ltd. on Wednesday said it will restructure Dickson CyberExpress, the 70,000-square-foot high-tech store at Kowloon Station in Hong Kong, putting about half its employees out of work.
The Kowloon site is operated by the company’s e-commerce subsidiary, Dickson Cyber Concepts Ltd. According to the Hong Kong-based firm, the present operations at Dickson CyberExpress are being consolidated through cross-merchandising in three of the existing zones. The firm declined to elaborate further about the affected zones. Charles Jayson, president of Dickson North America here, declined comment.
A total of 117 staff members will be laid off as a result of the restructuring, leaving 126 employees for the Dickson CyberExpress operation. Dickson Concepts will take a one-time charge of $4.5 million for the restructuring in the current fiscal year ending March 31. The charge was converted to U.S. dollars based on current exchange rates.
Dickson Concepts said that the change will allow for new product categories to be introduced through concessioning in the areas vacated. The store will maintain its interface with DicksonCyber.com, the company’s Internet site.
As reported, the e-commerce site DicksonCyber.com, which comprises six lifestyle portals, was launched in September, along with the opening of the Dickson CyberExpress site at Kowloon Station. A food gallery was opened on Dec. 4.
The company’s board, through Edwin Ing, executive director and secretary, said in a statement that the restructuring does not affect the core retailing and wholesaling operations of Dickson Concepts.
Dickson Concepts distributes top brands such as Polo Ralph Lauren, Brooks Bros., Bulgari, Coach and Charles Jourdan throughout Asia. The company also operates the Seibu Department store in Hong Kong. In addition, Dickson holds a long-term licensing agreement to produce and distribute Tommy Hilfiger leather goods and accessories in the U.S. and Canada.