Neiman Marcus lays off 500 workers

October 1, 2015, 9:00 PM UTC
(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Photograph by Joe Raedle — Getty Images

Luxury emporium Neiman Marcus became the latest retailer to cut jobs, laying off 500 corporate and support employees on Thursday.

The cuts, first reported by the Dallas Morning News and confirmed by a Neiman spokeswoman, include 157 jobs in Dallas, the hometown of Neiman Marcus, which recently filed paperwork to once again be listed on the stock exchange. None of the cuts involve sales staff, CEO Karen Katz told the Dallas Morning News. The job eliminations amount to about 3% of Neiman’s total workforce of 16,000 employees.

Katz told the Dallas newspaper that the re-organization will allow Neiman to invest in growth initiatives such as the acquisition last year of German online retailer MyTheresa and new and remodeled stores. Neiman, which also owns Bergdorf Goodman and the Last Call outlet chain, is planning to open two new stores in the New York area, including its first ever Manhattan namesake store, among other initiatives.

The cuts come two months after Neiman filed for an initial public offering (IPO) for the second time since 2013. Its IPO plan was dropped that year after Neiman Marcus agreed to be bought for $6 billion by Ares Management and a Canadian pension plan. The retailer was at one point a publicly traded company. It was acquired in 2005 for $5.1 billion by two private equity firms.

Last week, Neiman reported comparable sales for its most recent full year grew 3.9% and that online sales had risen to 26.3% of sales, putting far ahead of department store rivals like Nordstrom (JWN) and Macy’s (M). (Neiman’s longstanding catalog business gave it a head start.)

But despite revenue of $5.1 billion, the first time Neiman crossed that threshold, it reported a modest profit of $14.9 million for the year. After those two leveraged buyouts, Neiman carries long-term debt of $4.55 billion, on which it paid $289.9 million in interest last year. In its prospectus, Neiman said it would not receive any of the proceeds from the IPO, which will entail the sale of shares currently held by its owners.

Other retailers planning to or already having cut jobs include Walmart, (WMT) Whole Foods Market (WFM) and Target (TGT).