The store and its staff may feel some effects from operational changes its parent company announced Monday (Jan. 26, 2009), but they are not included in Home Depot’s plans to close 48 stores nationwide and layoff about 7,000 people.
Rank-and-file employees in Lower Pottsgrove and other remaining Home Depot locations are still eligible for merit-based raises and earned bonuses, the company said in a statement, and it will continue to match contributions to employees’ 401k retirement plans. “We’re very fortunate that the soundness of our company lets us live our value of taking care of our people, even in this time of unprecedented economic hardship,” Home Depot chairman Frank Blake said.
Store closings in 14 states during the next two months – none are in Pennsylvania – are part of plans the company is making to adjust to a lack of business in the nation’s continuing recession. Home Depot’s layoffs were only part of the job losses made public Monday; others occurred at Caterpillar, Sprint Nextel, and five other companies.
Home Depot said it would pull the plug on its 34 EXPO-brand Design Center stores and 14 others, ending jobs for 5,000 people in those locations and related support and distribution centers. Another 2,000 will be laid off as the company decentralizes support functions elsewhere. “These changes will make us a stronger company and will allow us to continue to grow associate employment over the long term to benefit our customers,” according to Blake.
The idea, the company said, was to focus resources on “core orange box stores” like the one in the township. Home Depot’s Lower Pottsgrove store of more than 114,000 square feet qualifies it as the township’s largest retailer by size.