Hundreds of managers at Makro Cash & Carry are facing redundancy as the company makes moves to streamline its workforce.

The loss-making wholesaler will next week begin a 90-day consultation with 500 managers. Staff will have to reapply for their jobs and the process is expected to lead to redundancies and the creation of new roles.

All departmental managers and supervisors are understood to be affected. Managers from each of Makro's 30 depots met at the company's Manchester HQ last week to discuss the proposals, with all staff informed this week. Changes are also being made to Makro's pension scheme.

"What they're doing makes sense," said one source. "There's a lot of overlap, but I don't know why they've taken so long to do it."

Makro confirmed the consultation was part of a process it started last year to ensure its structure was "fit for purpose" to take the business forward.

"We have also started a consultation with members of our defined benefit pension scheme over some proposed changes," said a spokesman. "We are not proposing to close the scheme. The proposal we have put forward is aimed at achieving a more sustainable and cost-effective benefits package for employees and the business for the future."

The consultation is the latest attempt by Makro to claw back the losses of £26.7m it recorded in the year to 31 December 2008, the company's latest available accounts. It closed three depots in Swansea, Wolverhampton and Coventry in May last year and has revamped eight depots. Although overall sales have fallen 2.6% to £899m, the company says food sales are up 4.1%.

According to The Grocer's Big 30 ranking of wholesalers, published this week, Makro had a gross profit margin of just 1% in the year to December 2008 and owed parent company Metro Group £74.4m.