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Buyer found for Edinburgh Woollen Mill

Sale contracts have reportedly been issued to the potential buyer by the firm’s administrator

FRP Advisory, the administrator to clothing retailer Edinburgh Woollen Mill, has accepted a rescue offer that could save a number of jobs at the group.

According to the Times, sale contracts have been issued to the potential buyer, who remains unnamed, although the deal is reportedly likely to save only a minority of the group’s 400 stores.

At the heart of Philip Day’s retail empire, Edinburgh Woollen Mill entered administration in October 2020 as it responded to the “harsh trading conditions” caused by the global pandemic.

Almost one third of its 2,571 employees have since been made redundant as the firm collapsed with £51.6m of unsecured debt.

Weeks before the group’s collapse, Day took £140m of security at group level that was previously held by Barclays Bank and cross-guaranteed by a number of companies, therefore in effect gaining control of the administration.

A source told the Times that Barclays had insisted on repayment and that Day was ready to financially support any credible purchaser of his former business.

Retail Sector has contacted Edinburgh Woollen Mill for comment.

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