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Oxfordshire Blockbuster stores: one closes the rest avoid axe for now
9:30am Thursday 14th February 2013 in News
THE majority of the county’s Blockbuster video stores have escaped the latest round of closures announced by administrators.
Specialist finance firm Deloitte, which is handling the Blockbuster administration, revealed 164 further stores would close yesterday. Of the 10 remaining sites in the county, only the Wantage outlet will close with the loss of five jobs.
But more Oxfordshire jobs are in jeopardy as it was revealed clothing retailer Republic has become the latest high street operator to collapse.
The chain has outlets in Cornmarket Street, Oxford, and Castle Quay, Banbury.
Lee Manning, joint administrator for Blockbuster, said: “We have continued to review the performance of individual stores since our appointment a month ago and have concluded that further closures are necessary in order to restructure the company for sale.
“We are in discussions with a number of parties interested in purchasing all or parts of the business and will update on progress in due course.”
Blockbuster called in administrators in January and 129 of its 528 stores, including those in Faringdon and Kidlington, were earmarked for closure. The remaining stores including those in Headington, Witney, Bicester, Banbury, Thame, Wallingford, Didcot and Carterton will continue to trade as usual whilst administrators progress negotiations with bidders.
A total of 2,500 jobs across the UK are at risk. Now 25 jobs at the county’s Republic stores are in jeopardy.
Administrator Hunter Kelly said: “Republic suffered poor trading results in the autumn and whilst sales picked up in December there has been a sudden and rapid decline in sales in late January.”