Mothercare to close all UK stores with loss of 2,500 jobs
Administrators to Mothercare UK will begin a phased closure of all 79 UK stores after years of losses and several restructuring efforts.
The collapse of the nursery goods retailer’s UK arm puts about 2,500 jobs at risk.
“This is a sad moment for a well-known high street name. No-one is immune from the challenging conditions faced by the UK retail sector,” said Zelf Hussain, joint administrator and PwC partner, on Tuesday.
“Like many other retailers, Mothercare has been hit hard by increasing cost pressures and changes in consumer spending.”
Whilst the UK segment has been loss-making for a number of years, the international franchise business remains profitable and will not be affected.
The British babywear specialist had explored many options to save the UK business, including launching a company voluntary agreement (CVA) and restructuring in 2018. It was also looking for a buyer, but administrators said no offers were received that would preserve the business as a going concern.
Zelf Hussain, David Robert Baxendale and Mark James Tobias Banfield of PwC were appointed as joint administrators of Mothercare UK Limited and Mothercare Business Services Limited on 5 November.
“It is with deep regret and sadness that we have been unable to avoid the administration of Mothercare UK and Mothercare Business Services, and we fully understand the significant impact on those UK colleagues and business partners who are affected,” said Clive Whiley, Chairman of Mothercare.
On Tuesday, reports emerged that Mothercare was looking at moving its two pension schemes out of the UK business to prevent them from entering the UK Pension Protection Fund (PPF).
Mothercare’s International segment is not in administration, and the more than 1,000 stores in over 40 territories will continue to trade as normal.
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