Birmingham-based opticians Dollond and Aitchison have closed their flagship store in the Bullring after nearly five years of trading.
The UK chain, whose national headquarters are in Rocky Lane, Aston, say “challenging” trading conditions and an “increasingly competitive” market forced the closure of the city centre branch.
The chain has issued a statement claiming Bullring customers would be better served by other branches in the Birmingham area.
The statement said: “D&A the opticians has confirmed that its branch in the Bullring has ceased trading.
“After nearly five years at its current location, D&A undertook a full analysis of the branch’s customer profile and pattern of business and concluded that it would be as convenient for many customers to be served by the Hagley Road and Yardley branches.
“The company has completed a consultation process with employees from the Bullring branch and has managed to avoid compulsory redundancies.”
The group, which denied it was in financial difficulties, said a total of 13 full and part-time employees affected by the closure had taken up alternative roles at other branches in the area.
“We’re not in trouble. Like many other retailers, both in general and within the optical sector, trading is challenging and the market has become increasingly competitive,” added the statement.
“But we believe we will be well placed going forward to meet the needs of our customers by providing high quality eyewear solutions whatever our customers’ budgets may be.”
The group has a network of more than 400 branches in the UK.