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Cable calls for Comet inquiry

The Business Department confirmed that Vince Cable has called an investigation into Comet in a bid to find out why the firm ended up going out of business and the circumstances around the purchase of the company by a private equity firm last year.

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History of Comet

  • Founded in Hull in 1933 by George Hollingbery as Comet Battery Stores Limited.
  • Originally sold charging batteries and accumulators, before moving into the radio rental business.
  • Grew to 2,500 accounts by 1939 and opened its first superstore in Hull in 1968.
  • Acquired by Kingfisher for £129 million in 1984 and increased to more than 250 stores nationwide by 1996.
  • Demerged from Kingfisher in 2003, forming a new group known as Kesa Electricals with its sister electrical companies throughout Europe.
  • Deloitte is appointed administrator in November 2012. The final group of 49 stores from the former 235-strong estate close down in December 2012.

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