The future of Office Outlet’s employees is uncertain as the stationery retailer has gone into administration, putting 1,200 jobs at risk.
According to partners at Deloitte who were appointed as joint administrators, the declining stationery market and weakening of high street retail in the UK, not to mention the lack of trade credit from suppliers, factored in the financial meltdown of Office Outlet, formerly known as Staples.
“We are hopeful a buyer can still be found for the business in the coming weeks and we will continue to trade the business with that aim in mind.” – Richard Hawes, Deloitte Partner
The stationery chain has 90 stores, all of which will continue trading while the company seeks for potential buyers.
Last year, Office Outlet entered into a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) before the management buyout, which allowed it to shut down four stores and cut its rental costs on 20 others. Unfortunately, this didn’t help the company raise additional funds for the next stage of the buyout plan.
“Despite being highly impressed by the Office Outlet story, potential investors have held back due to retail sector sentiment and the general level of uncertainty,” – Chris Yates, Chief Executive Officer, Office Outlet
Office Outlet is the latest in a string of retailers who have gone into administration. A couple of weeks earlier, its chief rival Paperchase considered a CVA to resolve its problem with unprofitable stores and rental costs.
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