Apr 26, 2019

Debenhams to cut up to 1,200 jobs and close stores in CVA

Debenhams is to close an initial 22 stores early in 2020 using a company voluntary arrangement, the latest step in a complex restructuring designed to reduce its debts and return the struggling department store group to profitability. In a statement, the company said that 1,200 employees in the stores had already been notified about the decision. More stores could close in dependence on future trading performance. Terry Duddy, executive chairman of Debenhams, said: "The issues facing the UK high street are very well known. Debenhams has a clear strategy and a bright future, but in order for the business to prosper, we need to restructure the group's store portfolio and its balance sheet, which are not appropriate for today's much changed retail environment." The move is likely to prompt further criticism from Mike Ashley, the billionaire founder of Sports Direct, whose 29 per cent stake in Debenhams was wiped out in the restructuring and who has insisted that only a small number of Debenhams stores need to close.

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