16,000 jobs at risk as convenience store chain McColl’s collapses
Convenience chain McColl’s has confirmed it will collapse into administration, putting 1,100 shop and 16,000 workers at risk.
The troubled retailer, which has 1265 convenience stores and newsagents across England, Scotland and Wales, held talks with its lenders on Friday morning in the hope they could extend their loan agreements.
Supermarket giant Morrisons, which is a major wholesale partner, also tabled a last-ditch effort to but the business.
However, the company confirmed “the lenders made clear that they were not satisfied that such discussions would reach an outcome acceptable to them”.
It said the company will now appoint administrators from PwC in an effort to “preserve the future of the business and to protect the interests of employees”.
The company said it hopes that the administrators will help to “implement a sale of the business to a third-party purchaser as soon as possible”.
It is understood that Morrisons is still interested in a takeover, while Sky News has reported that forecourt giant EG Group is interested in a deal.
Earlier on Friday, Morrisons tabled a rescue deal which would also take on the business as a going concern, absorb its debts of over £100 million and take responsibility for the company’s pension scheme.
The two businesses are major partners, with McColl’s – branded RS McColl in Scotland – operating hundreds of convenience shops under the Morrisons Daily brand.
McColl’s has struggled financially in recent years after witnessing soaring costs due to supply chain disruption, inflation and its large debt burden.
On Thursday evening, McColl’s had said it was in talks over “potential financing solutions” to resolve its funding issues.
Shares in McColl’s were suspended earlier this week after the company delayed the publication of its latest financial results due to its financing talks.