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House of Fraser will appoint Ernst & Young as administrators after talks aimed at salvaging the struggling department store group ended without agreement.
“Significant progress has been made towards completing a sale of the group’s business and assets. The proposed administrators are expected to continue to progress those discussions with a view to concluding a transaction shortly after their appointment,” the group said in a statement.
“The proposed administrators have confirmed that the business will continue trading, including all stores and offices, while they seek to complete a sale. All stores will be open for business as usual today,” it added.
Sports Direct, which owns 11 per cent of House of Fraser’s UK operating company, and Edinburgh Woollen Mill owner Philip Day had been among the leading contenders to acquire House of Fraser, which has been hard hit by a combination of rising costs, poor trading, a lack of investment and an inflexible and expensive store estate.