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Debenhams to file for administration

By Don-Alvin Adegeest


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Debenhams is to file for administration after the struggling retailer saw its UK stores shut due the government-enforced retail closures as part of the Covid-19 safety precaution.

Navigating a debt of 600 million pounds, last year Debenhams was rescued by lenders when it collapsed into administration in April 2019. After multiple outlet closures and layoffs, the company currently operates 141 stores and employs 22,000 staff.

A spokesman told the Guardian: “Like all retailers, we are making contingency plans reflecting the extraordinary current circumstances. Our owners and lenders remain highly supportive and whatever actions we may take will be with a view to protecting the business during the current situation.”

“While our stores remain closed in line with government guidance, and the majority of our store-facing colleagues have been furloughed, our website continues to trade and we are accepting customer orders, gift cards and returns.”

Debenhams boss Stefaan Vansteenkiste said the circumstances of the decision were “unprecedented”.

“We have taken this step to protect our business, our employees, and other important stakeholders,” he said.

Mr Vansteenkiste said it will allow Debenhams “to resume trading from our stores when government restrictions are lifted”.

Image courtesy Debenhams

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