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BREAKING: House of Fraser looks set to close Dundrum Town Centre store as administrators are appointed to stricken company

Irish Mirror logoIrish Mirror 10/08/2018 James Andrews
a bridge over a body of water: Dundrum Town Centre © Provided by Trinity Mirror Shared Services Limited Dundrum Town Centre

Retail giant House of Fraser looks set to close its Dundrum Town Centre store as it called in administrators this morning.

17,500 staff jobs in the UK and Ireland are at risk.

The bombshell comes weeks after the 169-year-old retailer revealed it planned to shut 31 UK stores in order to survive.

The company's stores are set to open as usual today, and bosses said they are optimistic a rescue package can be put together.

Administrators Ernst & Young are now attempting to find a buyer to save the company.

It has been holding talks with investors and creditors, but a statement this morning said these have "not concluded in a solvent solution".

House of Fraser said in June it needed to shut 31 UK stores and make up to 6,000 people redundant to survive, but that rescue plan was thrown into doubt after Chinese group C.banner - which owns Hamleys - pulled out of a plan to inject new equity.

a group of people standing in front of a store © Provided by Trinity Mirror Shared Services Limited

The retailer has only one store in the Republic of Ireland and one in Belfast.

Earlier this week, The Irish Mirror revealed a source in Dundrum claimed employees have been told House of Fraser may be gone before the end of the month.

The insider claimed: “House of Fraser might be closing in a few weeks after a big shareholder has pulled out.

“They know on Thursday if they will have to close. If nothing changes, then the store will shut in two weeks.

“All concessions got the warning last week that it’s possible.”

The UK fashion chain confirmed to RSVP Live that there will be store closures by the New Year.

A spokeswoman said: “Whereas it is correct that C:Banner, the Chinese quoted company that was going to inject £70 million into House of Fraser has had to pull out, the company, House of Fraser is in discussions with alternative investors and is exploring options to obtain the required investment on the same timetable.

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“Discussions are ongoing and a further announcement will be made as and when appropriate.

“However, yesterday the company reached a settlement with a group of landlords that was challenging its CVA.

“This means it can now proceed with its store closures by the New Year and it has substantially reduced its rent bill which makes it a more attractive proposition to an investor.”

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