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Debenhams on the brink as JD Sports exits rescue talks after Arcadia’s collapse

Written by on 01/12/2020

The future of another big retail name, Debenhams, has reached a potential tipping point after JD Sports pulled out of talks on a rescue takeover.

JD was understood to be the sole entity left in a sale process initiated by administrators after the troubled 242-year old department store chain’s latest collapse in April.

But the sportswear chain was spooked by the demise on Monday night of Debenhams’ biggest supplier, Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia Group, while there was also unease over a deal among JD’s shareholders.

Debenhams still employs 12,000 staff at 128 UK stores – many of them currently closed due to coronavirus restrictions.

A statement from Debenhams was expected later on Tuesday morning to clarify its position following JD’s decision.

Its update to the City read: “JD Sports Fashion, the leading retailer of sports, fashion and outdoor brands, confirms that discussions with the administrators of Debenhams regarding a potential acquisition of the UK business have now been terminated.”

Sky News reported in August that the owners of Debenhams had drafted advisers from Hilco, a restructuring specialist, to work on a possible liquidation if administrators judge it is unable to trade solvently.

 Sky News

© Sky News 2020

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