At least 100 staff in the buying and merchandising departments of Grattan in Ingleby Road, Bradford, have been given redundancy notices and a further wave of job cuts is on the cards early next year.

It is understood that the firm’s owners, Otto UK, are planning to transfer departments to Germany, where the parent group, Otto Versand, is based.

The move follows a review of the UK mail order business by German consultancy EMC2.

The move is part of a major streamlining and restructuring programme to slim down the historic business. Earlier this year Bradford-based Empire Stores announced the end of its catalogue operations with the loss of more than 800 jobs.

The Telegraph & Argus understands that Grattan workers have been sworn to secrecy but there is a high degree of discontent at the way the changes are being handled.

In a statement the company said: “Otto UK has begun consulting with union representatives with regards to restructuring and streamlining the business. The first phase of consultations will last 90 days and it will affect the buying and creative departments.

“The second phase will be announced in the New Year. It could involve purchasing being moved to Germany as a result of cost cutting. No decision has been made as yet.”

The changes follow the appointment of Otto UK’s new chief executive, Koert Tulleners, who joined the firm in September.

He succeeded Mike Hancox, who resigned in June following a strategic review of Grattan by the German owners. This led to a decision to split the logistics and retail operations with the logistics business, Parcelnet, being run from Germany.

The retail company which includes, Freemans, Grattan and Kaleidoscope catalogues, continued to operate from its London base.

Before this move Mr Hancox, who ran the UK arm for two and a half years, thought he had secured significant new investment for the UK catalogue businesses which Otto had considered selling.

Grattan began trading in 1912 and in 1991 was sold to Otto Versand, the world’s largest home shopping company.

At its peak, Grattan employed thousands of people in the city.