1. ITV Report

Clothing giant New Look announces plans to axe almost 1,000 jobs and close 60 stores

Struggling fashion chain New Look have announced plans to close 60 stores Credit: PA

Up to 980 jobs are facing the axe at New Look as the fashion retailer looks to close 60 stores and slash rent on nearly 400 shops, as part of a rescue plan.

New Look, which has 906 stores globally, have announced a plan to close nearly 10 per cent of its 593-strong UK store estate, as it pushes ahead with a company voluntary arrangement (CVA).

A CVA allows a company to exit unprofitable branches and secure rent reductions on the remaining estate.

The company said the closures would lead to redundancies, although it would look to redeploy staff elsewhere within the business if possible.

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Its rescue plan will also see the group ask landlords to slash the rent and revise leases on 393 stores across the UK.

Alistair McGeorge, executive chairman of New Look, said: "Given our challenged trading performance and over-rented UK store estate, we are having to take tough but necessary actions to reduce our fixed cost base and restore long-term profitability."

New Look, which is working with Deloitte on the restructure, said creditors will vote on whether to accept the CVA on March 21.

It is hoped the plans will mean New Look avoid the same fate as BHS (pictured) Credit: PA

All stores will remain open as normal during the period of the proposal and the company's online sales channel will be completely unaffected.

New Look, who employ 15,300 staff, have said it is a priority to "keep all potentially affected colleagues informed during this difficult time."

Daniel Butters, partner at Deloitte, added: "The retail trading environment in the UK remains extremely challenging, driven by weaker consumer confidence, the implications of Brexit and competition from online channels.

"It is important to stress that no stores will close on day one, and employees, suppliers and business rates will continue to be paid on time and in full."

The list of New Look stores set to close:

  • Aberdeen - Bon Accord
  • Beckton
  • Bolton (New Look Men store)
  • Borehamwood
  • Brynmawr
  • Burton (New Look Men)
  • Cameron Toll
  • Cardiff - Queen Arcade
  • Cheshunt
  • Clevedon
  • Craigleith
  • Doncaster (New Look Men)
  • Dundee - Wellgate
  • Exeter (New Look Men)
  • Fleet
  • Gateshead - Team Valley
  • Glasgow - Buchanan Street (New Look Men)
  • Gorleston
  • Hanley (New Look Men)- Intu Potteries
  • Hounslow (New Look Men)
  • Hull - Whitefriargate
  • Keynsham
  • Kingswood
  • Leeds - The Core Shopping Centre
  • Leicester - Haymarket
  • London - Marble Arch
  • London - Moorgate/ London Wall
  • London - Oxford Circus
  • Maidenhead
  • Maidstone (New Look Men)
  • Merry Hill (New Look Men)
  • Metro Centre (New Look Men)
  • Monmouth
  • Newport (New Look Men)
  • Newton Mearns
  • North Shields
  • Nottingham (New Look Men)
  • Ocean Terminal
  • Peterbrough Bridge Street
  • Pontypool
  • Portswood
  • Ramsgate
  • Reading - Broad Street
  • Reading Oracle (New Look Men)
  • Rhyl
  • Romford (New Look Men)
  • Rugby
  • Shrewsbury (New Look Men)
  • Sidmouth
  • Stockport - Merseyway
  • Stockton-on-Tees
  • Stratford Upon Avon - Bridge Street
  • Thornaby
  • Tonypandy
  • Torquay - Union Street
  • Tredegar
  • Troon
  • Wallsend
  • Weston Favell
  • Wigan (New Look Men)