2500 jobs at risk as Mothercare looks to call in administrators

Employment & Skills | Latest News | Retail | South East

National baby goods retailer Mothercare has said it has plans to call in the administrators, putting more than 2500 jobs at risk.

A statement from Mothercare read: “Since May 2018, we have undertaken a root and branch review of the Group and Mothercare UK within it, including a number of discussions over the summer with potential partners regarding our UK Retail business.

“Through this process, it has become clear that the UK Retail operations of the Group, which today includes 79 stores, are not capable of returning to a level of structural profitability and returns that are sustainable for the Group as it currently stands and/or attractive enough for a third party partner to operate on an arm’s length basis. Furthermore, the Company is unable to continue to satisfy the ongoing cash needs of Mothercare UK.”

Mothercare has already gone through a rescue deal, known as a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA), where an insolvency process that allows a business to reach an agreement with its creditors to pay off all or part of its debts. The process enabled the chain to shut 55 shops.

Union reaction

Dave Gill – Usdaw National Officer said: “Usdaw is providing our members in Mothercare with the support, representation and advice they need at this difficult and uncertain time. We will urge the administrators to treat the staff with dignity and respect, keep them fully informed through the administration process, do everything possible to save jobs and keep as many stores open as possible and prioritise stabilising the business to provide a more certain future.

“The scale of company administrations we have seen in recent years is devastating, not just for staff, but also for our communities and shopping centres. Usdaw is campaigning for the urgent action needed to save jobs and protect our local high streets. We need a government-led clear and coherent industrial strategy for retail to address the growing crisis on our high streets, as we have called for through our ‘Save our Shops’ campaign.”

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