Struggling Debenhams to put administrators on standby

Lead deal editor16
Posted 3rd Apr
Sad news They've been struggling for a while, been various news about this over the last few months but it's a possibility that the Coronvirus outbreak may send them into administration.



Debenhams, which employs 22,000 people, could signal a plan to appoint administrators next week, Sky News learns.

Shareholders in Debenhams are preparing to place the 242 year-old department store chain into administration as they seek to protect the business from creditors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sky News has learnt that the retailer, which employs about 22,000 people, could file a notice of intention to appoint administrators as early as next week.


KPMG, the accountancy firm, is understood to be among those on standby to handle the process.

The prospective appointment would be designed to shield the company from legal claims from creditors during the coronavirusoutbreak.

A firm decision to appoint administrators has, however, not been taken and it remains possible that an alternative outcome could yet emerge.

The move would come just days after Debenhams put the vast majority of its workforce on 'furlough', following the closure of its 142 stores across the UK.


Employees' wages will now be covered for three months by the government's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
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Debenhams has been in intensive care for at least 5 years.
There’s a shock I don’t know how they survived 2008, same with many private equity business models, buy a company with property, asset strip to get the cash out then stack up the debts to make it tax efficient, works really well when the economy is strong and cash flows are strong
Edited by: "whatyadoinsucka" 3rd Apr
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There’s a shock I don’t know how they survived 2008, same with many private equity business models, buy a company with property, asset strip to get the cash out then stack up the debts to make it tax efficient, works really well when the economy is strong and cash flows are strong
Edited by: "whatyadoinsucka" 3rd Apr
Debenhams has been in intensive care for at least 5 years.
Right thing to do!
Makes you wonder what will happen to the stores. Who’s going to want to let/ buy such big retail premises in today’s (or tomorrow’s) market.
For all its follies, Debenhams has been a cornerstone of the UK retail space and one does wonder with such old and big names falling by the wayside what would remain of the High Streets? Within 10 miles of where I am there are atleast 8-10 retail centres where Debenhams are the largest tenants and with them gone who is going to fill that space and if not will those centres even survive - sad times
Debenhams stock has now gone from being worth 2p to 1p
As a shareholder I've lost 10p
Might have to claim bankruptcy and get a government bail out
Edited by: "Norseg" 3rd Apr
They have been doing a lot of to reduce costs such as closing 22 stores so far, and planning to close 50 overall. Recently it was announced they will be closing all toy departments instore and online.

The situation their in is well similar to coin pusher, they where on the edge of falling and just one more knock and then they would fall, that knock just happened to be the Coronavirus. The only thing about this that is unlike a coin pusher is that there is no prize just thousands of job losses and vacant properties, some in already struggling centres and high streets.

The closure of Debenhams could be the final nail of intu properties coffin, as they themselves have struggles massively in the recent months. Debenhams have 10 stores in Intu owned properties including Merry Hill and Trafford Centre.
If anyone has any gift cards spend them now ...
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deleted193929
I would imagine the future just being large supermarkets catering for everything alongside restaurants and coffee shops. Everything else will be online.
they are only doing it so the creditor carries the pain - meanwhile debenhams rises from the ashes debt free in a similar manner to what Sports Direct did when it bought House of Fraser over minutes after it went into administration - then lots of brands pulled out as it cost them a fortune

i doubt you have seen the last of debenhams yet
jackvockins03/04/2020 19:12

If anyone has any gift cards spend them now ...


Iv told my family. It’s best to spread the word
I love Debenhams for the range of clothes they have in store. I do wonder where people are shopping if they are avoiding the place. Is it all online? The advantage of bricks and mortar shops is surely that you can check the fit and quality before purchasing. Who really wants the hassle of returning stuff to an online vendor and to have to try again with another? Or is the trend for Ill-fitting, poorly made clothes?
I posted a separate discussion on this not realising this one existed. The sad thing I found from the few comments (beyond the feeble jokers) was that it appears some would rather see it fail than survive because of Mike Ashley.
Regardless of what folk think of him, that is quite short sighted when you take into account the history, number of stores and key sites and the staff who will be affected.
Debenhams has been one bright spot on the high Street and to think we will be left with bland Primarks and the like is a shame.
Sadly, the nature of many customers these days is to seek out the cheapest tat about and that is obvious to see with your eyes if you are at all discerning. HUKD does does not mean getting the cheapest junk about to me but I fear the undercurrent of thinking by many of what is acceptable explains things well enough.

Sad times as said.
Today they have announced the closures of 7 stores:

- Leamington Spa
- Salisbury
- South Shields
- Stratford-upon-Avon
- Truro
- Warrington
- London Westfield
Another 4 stores not to reopen:

- Kidderminster
- Borehamwood
- Southampton
- Swindon

That's 11 Debenhams stores that will not re-open when the lockdown is lifted I expect more will be added.
Another 5 more stores not to re-open all in Hamnerson own properties:

- Birmingham Bullring
- Leicester Highcross
- Croydon Centrale
- Glasgow Silverburn
- Reading Oracle

That's now 16 Debenhams stores that will not re-open when then lockdown is lifted and I still expect more will be added.
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