There are fears that 80 people could be set to lose their jobs in Worcester as a nationwide car retailer announced cuts.

Cazoo cars is to axe around 750 jobs across the UK and Europe as the retailer looks to cut costs by more than £200 million by the end of 2023.

As part of the cuts, two of its preparation sites in the UK will shut - and the company has not yet confirmed which ones.

However, an employee at the Preparation Centre, in Norton, just outside Worcester, claims that he and around 80 colleagues have been put out of the job, with 30 days’ notice

The site in Church Lane was taken over by Cazoo last year when the firm acquired SMH Fleet Solutions.

A reporter went to the site and was told by a security guard that it had closed.

Cazoo plans to slash its workforce by about 15 per cent due to consumer cutbacks and fears of recession.

Founder and chief executive Alex Chesterman said: “The combination of rising inflation and interest rates with supply chain issues caused by the pandemic and war has driven up the cost of living and hit consumer confidence.

“This perfect storm has placed cash conservation top of mind for the company, ahead of growth.”

Worcester News: The Cazoo Preparation Centre in Norton, outside WorcesterThe Cazoo Preparation Centre in Norton, outside Worcester

Cazoo currently has around 5,000 employees in total, and it is believed that the bulk of the cuts will come from its 4,000-strong UK staff base.

The firm said it will also lower marketing spend and push back some planned investment projects, among other cost-cutting measures.

The company, founded two and a half years ago, has seen online car sales dwindle as pandemic restrictions have been lifted, with used car dealer Carzam collapsing late last week.

A statement from Cazoo read: “The company is not immune to the rapid shift in the global economy and the possibility of a recession in the coming months.

“As a result, management’s expectations for the full year are now more cautious, reflecting the weaker and uncertain external environment.”

Cazoo lowered its sales outlook for the year ahead in light of the more difficult trading.

It now expects to sell between 70,000 and 80,000 vehicles in the full year, down from previous guidance, but this would still be up to 130 per cent higher year-on-year.

Revenues of between £1.4 billion and £1.5 billion are now expected for the year, and cash flow is likely to break even in the UK by the end of 2023.