Mothercare to close 50 stores in rescue plan

The retail giant said on Monday that it had been working on a comprehensive restructuring and refinancing package. The company will disclose details of the restructuring plan along with full year earnings on Thursday a source said

The group also said that Mark Newton-Jones, the former Littlewoods chief executive who departed from that role at Mothercare while under the stewardship of previous chairman Alan Parker in April, will return to his post.

The UK restructuring measure will see Mothercare exit from 50 stores by June 2019 to achieve a targeted estate of 78 stores by 2020.

Hertfordshire-based Mothercare has confirmed that it plans to close 50 stores as part of a rescue plan for the beleaguered babycare retailer. David Wood, the former Tesco executive who had replaced Newton-Jones will now become Mothercare's group managing director. "Mothercare Ireland is a completely separate company and as a result our 15 Irish stores are unaffected by any plans in the proposal and will continue to trade as normal".

Over the a year ago Mothercare's shares have sunk by 83 percent.

Interim executive chairman Clive Whiley said: "These measures provide a solid platform from which to reposition the group and begin to focus on growth, both in the United Kingdom and internationally".

Putting media speculations to rest, Mothercare has confirmed measures to refinance its business and restructuring of its United Kingdom store portfolio.

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The shake-up aimed at restoring the fortunes of the chain are likely to result in hundreds of job losses.

The latest change at the top, first reported by Sky News, will be revealed alongside details of Mothercare's substantial restructuring, which it is undertaking in a bid to avoid becoming the latest high street name to collapse into administration.

This is not the first time Mothercare has struggled, with the retailer closing nearly half of its stores across the United Kingdom in the last five years.

The company announced this morning it also plans to seek rent reductions on 21 of its stores as it tries to secure "a viable and sustainable future".

That includes £28 million it is seeking to raise from shareholders, an extension of its existing debt to £67.5 million, and £18 million in shareholder and trade partner loans.

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