2,000 jobs under threat at fashion chain

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Select modelsImage copyright Select

About 2,000 jobs are under threat as another high street retailer faces tough trading conditions.

The company that owns Select, a fashion chain aimed at young women, is seeking a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) that would let it slash rents and close unprofitable stores.

The chain has 183 stores and also trades online with some 4,000 products.

Earlier this month fashion chain New Look announced plans to close 60 stores as part of a rescue deal.

Rents at the remaining 400 New Look stores will be cut and almost 1,000 staff face redundancy.

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Select owner Genus UK has asked business advisory firm Quantuma for help with its CVA.

Andrew Andronikou, a Quantuma partner, said the chain had been hit by the “depressed retail market and escalating rent and rate charges”.

“The loss of anchor tenants on high streets and in smaller shopping centres has had a downward spiralling effect on stores such as Select, culminating in a reduction of footfall and therefore custom,” he said.

“The position for this business, and many businesses of the same model is no longer tenable and has escalated to the present situation where a CVA is considered to be the only option, other than closing it in its entirety.”

Cutting rents is the main aim of the CVA and it was not clear how many stores the company aimed to close.

Genus UK made a loss of £1.5m on sales of £81m for the year to June 2016.

Creditors will vote on the CVA proposal on 13 April.

Mr Andronikou said Quantuma was “confident” that creditors would back the proposals to prevent “another brand disappearing from our high streets”.

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