QVC, one of Chester County’s largest employers, lays off hundreds of people

The West Chester-based television network is cutting 400 jobs. The company is one of the largest employers in the county and hopes its multi-year plan can keep it afloat.

This July 7, 2017, photo shows QVC facility in West Chester, Pa. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

This July 7, 2017, photo shows QVC facility in West Chester, Pa. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

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QVC, the West Chester-based shopping network, is laying off 400 employees as it looks to cut costs following a troubling year for its parent company, Qurate Retail Group.

A vast majority of the employees were let go on Feb. 28, but a few will transition out of the company over time. The company said impacted employees will be given a severance package and will still receive benefits for an extended time.

The company released its year-end earnings report on Wednesday and David Rawlinson, Qurate Retail’s president and chief executive officer, said in a written statement “2022 was a challenging year for the company.”

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“We have taken action to strengthen the balance sheet, improve execution and aggressively cut costs, including meaningfully reducing excess inventory and undergoing a structural reorganization,” Rawlinson said.

All of the company’s revenue streams reported decreased earnings in 2022 — some of which can be attributed to a massive fire at a QVC building in North Carolina. The job cuts at QVC are a part of Qurate Retail’s multi-year recovery plan, Project Athens.

As one of the county’s largest employers, many community members depend on the company for the promise of jobs.

In response to hearing of the layoffs, Gary Smith, president of the Chester County Economic Development Council, hearkened back to a time when the county assisted the company in getting started in West Chester.

“We were saddened to learn of the layoffs announced yesterday and stand ready to provide resources, support, and guidance to the individuals and families that will be impacted,” Smith said in a joint statement with the county Board of Commissioners and the Chamber of Business and Industry.

County Commissioners Marian Moskowitz, Josh Maxwell, and Michelle Kichline also offered their support to those who lost their employment and said they were confident in being able to help “find jobs for those who want to continue working here.”

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