• A merger between airline BA and Dutch carrier KLM could lead to 16,200 job losses, according to the first in-depth analysis of the proposed deal. The study, by transport analyst Chris Tarry at Commerzbank, also estimates that the merger would result in one-off costs of £970m for the two airlines but would increase their value by 1.1bn euros. BA’s 62,500 employees would bear the brunt of the cutbacks with 10,400 job losses compared with 5,800 in KLM. A further 3,200 jobs could be lost if BA withdraws from short-haul services at Gatwick, the study claims. A reduction in the size of the long-haul fleet could account for another 4,000 job losses among the 98,000-strong combined workforce.
Ikea expands in UK
• Swedish furniture chain Ikea has announced a huge expansion in the UK, which will create 10,000 new jobs in the next 10 years. The company will build 20 new stores which it predicts could double sales and bring its prices down by 20 per cent. MD Goran Nilsson said, “We are a volume retailer. We will offset price decreases with higher sales.”
The UK has become Ikea’s second biggest market after Germany and now accounts for 11.5 per cent of its £5bn turnover. Ikea employs 5,000 people in the UK and 50,000 across the world. Financial Times
Spring in PO deal
• Career and workforce group Spring will supply permanent recruitment advertising services to the Post Office’s systems division in the UK.
The three-year contract offers exclusivity for all permanent recruitment advertising projects for IT staff across the Post Office’s business systems.
Post Office business systems, the internal supplier of all IT services to the Post Office, already uses Spring as preferred supplier for contract and permanent contingency services.