26 Mar 2012 16:31
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PwC can confirm that the joint administrators are liaising with a number of parties who have expressed an interest in purchasing part or all of the business and assets of the group.
However, having reviewed the ongoing operational requirements of the business and with the continued difficulties on the high street, unfortunately it has been necessary to close 277 stores throughout the UK and Ireland as of today. Unfortunately, this will inevitably lead to a number of job losses and 2,074 store employees will be made redundant this week.
The administrators are working closely with employees affected by this decision to ensure they receive the support they need during this difficult time to assist with their claims for redundancy and other compensatory payments.
Mike Jervis, joint administrator and partner at PwC said:
“Our priority is to continue trading the business as normal while we continue to pursue a sale. The recent job losses are regrettable but will place the company in a stronger position while we explore opportunities to conclude a sale. My team and I will be doing all we can to help the affected employees at this difficult time.”
The remaining 333 stores employing 2,844 people will stay open as normal while the administrators continue their efforts to find a purchaser for the business.
Notes to Editors:
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