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900 Phones 4u jobs saved in deal

Phones 4u has gone into administration Credit: PA

Nearly 900 jobs at collapsed retail chain Phones 4u were saved tonight after network operator Vodafone struck a deal to buy 140 stores.

However, administrator PwC said it had failed to prevent 628 redundancies among head office and telesales staff at Phones 4u's Staffordshire offices.

PwC is continuing talks with other parties regarding the purchase of assets and said it planned to retain a further 400 head office staff to assist with its work.

It will release details of the 140 stores in the Vodafone deal on Monday.

Hopes for last-ditch rescue of Phone 4u dashed

Phones 4u has gone into administration Credit: PA

Hopes for a last-ditch rescue of Phones 4u have been quashed as talks continue over deals to save at least some of its shops and jobs.

Administrators from PwC said it was in discussions with three parties over the potential sale of assets following the company's collapse on Sunday.

However, it said a proposed debt-for-equity swap in which bondholders agree to cut back on what they are owed in order to reopen contract talks with network operators EE and Vodafone was not an option.

PwC expects to pay the majority of salaries and wage arrears and paid tribute to the co-operation of staff since the shock demise of the business.

Joint administrator Rob Hunt said: "Thousands of people have stuck with us during the course of this week in difficult circumstances."

Some 560 stores and 4,800 jobs are still at risk after Dixons Carphone agreed a deal yesterday to take on the 800 staff who had worked at 160 Phones 4u concessions within Currys/PC World stores.

All Phones 4u stores are currently shut while PwC attempts to find buyers.

A call with bondholders today heard a statement from Phones 4u's private equity owner BC Partners in which it said it was devastated by the collapse.


Administrators confirm Dixons Carphone job offers

The administrators for Phones 4U have confirmed that Dixons Carphone have agreed to offer roles to all people in the Phone4U concessions located in Dixons Carphone outlets.

"We can confirm that Dixons Carphone have agreed, with our blessing, to offer roles to all people in the Phones 4U concessions located in Dixons Carphone outlets. This agreement relates solely to staff and does not include the sale of any stock, chattels or the Phones 4U brand name.

We're delighted to reach this agreement, thereby securing continued employment for more than 800 people. We would like to wish the transferring staff all the best in their new roles.

We continue to engage with other parties regarding their interest in parts of the business."

– Rob Hunt joint administrator and PwC partner
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Dixons Carphone hopes to take on 800 Phones 4u staff

Dixons Carphone has offered to take on 800 of the 5,600 staff who faced being out of work after the collapse of mobile phone retailer Phones 4u.

The jobs are for staff who currently work at Phones 4u concessions within Currys/PC World stores, which were recently taken over by Dixons Carphone.

A statement on the company website said: "With regards to our Phones 4U shop-in-shop colleagues we hope to help them secure new roles with us and are opening up discussions with the administrators to agree our position."

Dixons Carphone also tweeted that roles could be available for Phones 4u staff at Carphone Warehouse and Dixons.

More hope was offered by reports that network operators Vodafone and EE may be willing to buy part of Phones 4u's business.

Council support for Phones4U workers as firm goes under

Staffordshire County council has promised to provide support for Phones4U workers after the company went into administration earlier this week.

Staffordshire County council has promised to provide support for Phones4U workers Credit: Philip Toscano/PA Wire

It comes as the number of people claiming job seeker's allowance in the county fell to its lowest level for seven years.

Council leaders say they want to work with local businesses to help them grow.


Firm vows pig superfarm would include odour control

The company behind a controversial £15 million pig superfarm have said they made significant changes on original plans which were rejected in 2011.

Before and after: what the site looks like now (above) and what it would look like if the plans are approved Credit: ITV News Central

Midland Pig Producers say fully-enclosed buildings will be installed over loading bay areas, while odour control systems will be put in to the pig units.

A storm tank to deliver clean water run-off will also be used.

If approved, it would be the biggest such farm in the UK Credit: ITV News Central

A big campaign was launched in opposition to the development in the past, including support from celebrities including Dominic West, Pauline Quirke and Lucy Pargeter.

If approved, it would be the largest such farm in the UK.

£15m pig super-farm plans to go on public view

The super-farm would cost £15 million to build Credit: ITV News Central

Revised plans to build a £15 million pound pig super-farm in Derbyshire will go on public view today.

The farm at Foston would be the biggest in the UK and would house 25,000 animals.

The proposed site at Foston Credit: ITV News Central

Original plans put forward in 2009 were rejected.

Administrator: 'Stores closed while business talks take place'

Staffordshire-based firm Phones4U has gone into administration.

Robert Jonathan Hunt, Ian David Green and Robert John Moran of PwC have been appointed as administrators.

Phones4U also runs its own network operator, Life Mobile Limited, which is also in administration Credit: PA

"This is a very sad day for the business and the many people working there. In light of our impending appointment the directors understandably took the decision to close all the shops today and sent many staff home.

Our initial focus will be to quickly engage with parties who may be interested in acquiring all or part of the business, and to better understand the financial position and options for the company. The stores will remain closed while we have these conversations.

We will also be talking to network operators and suppliers, and trying to access funds to pay for the costs of the business, including wages.

These conversations will determine whether we can re-open stores and trade, and also if and when we can pay the arrears of wages to employees. Our hope is that we will be able to pay all the outstanding wages arrears.”

– Rob Hunt, joint administrator and PwC partner
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