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Christmas Day layoffs? This firm did it

Ben Stansall | AFP | Getty Images

A bitter war of words has erupted between a workers' union and the owners of a U.K. delivery company that notified its workers of impending redundancies in an email on Christmas Day.

More than 2,000 staff at City Link will be let go on New Year's Eve, as the company goes into administration due to a "continued lack of profitability." Investment firm Better Capital, which owns City Link, said it regretted the decision, but defended the timing of the announcement.

"Unfortunately the appointment of an administrator was leaked to the media ahead of the intended announcement. The directors very much regret the impact on the employees of City Link receiving such bad news on Christmas Day," it said in a statement to shareholders on Monday morning.

RMT, a transport union in the U.K., has lambasted the company over recent days after meeting with City Link's administrators Ernst & Young. The RMT called it a "truly horrific catalogue of mismanagement" and accused City Link of not telling staff that it had been working with insolvency advisors since November.

The announcement was supposed to be withheld until the day after Christmas Day, but Better Capital released the statement early after a whistleblower leaked news of the redundancies.

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