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Job uncertainty at Ipswich firm

PUBLISHED: 13:48 10 December 2002 | UPDATED: 13:09 03 March 2010

IPSWICH-based staff of a major transport firm were today facing an uncertain Christmas after learning their business was being sold.

Staff at P&O Trans European, whose head office is Peninsula House in Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, were learning that their business was being bought by Somerset-based Wincanton plc.

IPSWICH-based staff of a major transport firm were today facing an uncertain Christmas after learning their business was being sold.

Staff at P&O Trans European, whose head office is Peninsula House in Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, were learning that their business was being bought by Somerset-based Wincanton plc.

A total of 7,000 people are employed by P&O Trans European across Britain, including 120 at its headquarters.

Wincanton said most jobs would be safe after the £152 million deal, but some rationalisation may happen in the future.

Job losses would "kept to a minimum," said a spokesman for the company.

The deal is dependent on the approval of Wincanton's shareholders, which is expected to be granted – the sale is expected to be completed by December 31.

A spokesman for Wincanton said today that there would be no widespread job losses across the merged group.

But there could be some savings where the two businesses overlapped.

The deal does not affect the P&O Ferrymasters business, which has a major base at Goddard Road in Ipswich.

That business, which employs 230 people in Ipswich, will be integrated within the company's ferries business.

P&O Trans European operates across the continent delivering specialist items to businesses in a number of sectors, including motor manufacturers, chemical industries, and energy producers.

Wincanton has a similar business, and the acquisition will make it the second largest company in its field in the United Kingdom.

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