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Pret adapts to WFH orders, selling bake-at-home goods in Tesco

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Lucy Harley-McKeown
·2-min read
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A bag is passed to a customer at Pret a Manger in New Cavendish Street, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), London, Britain, June 1, 2020. REUTERS/Hannah McKay
The move will initially focus on the rollout in freezer aisles of the signature Pret croissants for baking at home, which will be available in 700 Tesco stores. Photo: Reuters/Hannah McKay

High street sandwich chain Pret a Manger has said it will roll out baked treats in Tesco (TSCO.L), as it swims against the tide of UK high street closures and lockdown pressures.

The deal with the UK's biggest supermarket chain is an effort to pivot to the "new normal" and prospects of a shift in working patterns for good.

The move will initially focus on the rollout in freezer aisles of the signature Pret croissants for baking at home, which will be available in 700 Tesco stores.

Pret's managing director Claire Clough has also said that dressings and sauces are in consideration for sale in supermarkets.

Owned by investment group JAB Holdings, Pret already sells coffee via Amazon (AMZN), Ocado (OCDO.L), Sainsbury’s (SBRY.L) and Waitrose.

READ MORE: Over 17,500 UK chain stores shuttered in 2020 with more shocks on horizon

Last September, it got creative with its offering, with the launch of a subscription service for drinks. The service allows customers to have a barista-prepared drink, including coffees, teas, hot chocolates, smoothies and frappes, up to five times a day for £20 ($27.84) per month.

At the time, Pret said the subscription service was the first of its kind in the UK, though similar schemes exist in the United States.

The chain has been among brands hammered by the coronavirus crisis, with staff suffering job cuts and closures.

In August, the business axed 2,800 roles as part of a restructuring which saw it close 30 sites. Alongside the job cuts in shops, it slashed a further 90 roles in its support centre teams. In October, it also announced plans to close another six shops and cut around 400 jobs.

While half of its 390 stores remain closed, around half of its staff are on furlough.

Watch: Pret boss says demand in city centres may never recover