12,000 jobs at risk

Debenhams collapse adds to high street jobs toll

Debenhams store Edinburgh

Another retail giant fails (pic: Terry Murden)

Department store chain Debenhams is expected to close after JD Sports confirmed it was pulling out of a rescue deal and administrators were unable to find a buyer.

The failure of talks puts around 12,000 jobs at risk, adding to 13,000 at the Arcadia empire which plunged into administration yesterday.

Administrators to Debenhams, FRP Advisory, announced this morning that they continue to seek buyers for all or parts of the business but have begun winding down its operations.

JD Sports pulled out following the collapse of Sir Philip Green’s high street empire Arcadia which held significant concessions in Debenhams and were a major contributor to revenue, worth £75m a year in sales.

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Debenhams will continue to trade through its 124 UK stores and online to clear its current and contracted stocks. If no alternative offers are received for the firm, the UK operations will close.

Geoff Rowley, joint administrator to Debenhams and partner at FRP, said: “All reasonable steps were taken to complete a transaction that would secure the future of Debenhams.

“However, the economic landscape is extremely challenging and, coupled with the uncertainty facing the UK retail industry, a viable deal could not be reached.”

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