Mothercare increases store closures to 60 and looks to raise £32.5m from shareholders

Mother and baby retailer, Mothercare is seeking to raise £32.5 million from existing shareholders in its latest battle amid the challenging UK high street.

Almost two months after securing a lifeline deal with creditors and announcing plans to shut 50 stores, the chain has raised the number of planned closures to 60.

The capital raising will be at 19pence per share, below the closing level of 28.6pence last Friday.

The increase in planned store closures comes from the decision to put its Childrens World business, a subsidiary that houses 22 of its stores, into administration.

Mothercare will transfer 13 of the Childrens World outlets into other parts of its business.

The number of Mothercare jobs affected will now be higher than the 800 figure revealed last month when its was planned to close only 50 stores.

Chief executive Mark Newton-Jones, said the moves should help Mothercare get back on track.

“After a very challenging period for our business, we have now finalised arrangements to restructure and refinance the Group, ensuring that the transformation of the Mothercare brand we started four years ago can now be completed,” he said.

“Mothercare is a great British brand with over 50 years of heritage and we now have the financing in place to take it forward for many more years to come. We have seen an unprecedented period for UK retail and we have not been alone in facing a number of strong headwinds.

“I am pleased to say however, that we are now in a position to re-focus on our customers and improve the Mothercare brand both in the UK and across the globe.”

The company has said that the restuturing will help generate £10m in savings per year. It is seeking to find another £9m of annual savings through a ‘root and brand review of every facet of the Mothercare business.”

Mothercare is one of a group of retailers and high street restaurant chains to have struck CVA agreements with their landlords in order to shore up their finances by trading from smaller property estates.

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of ToyNews and its sister title, Licensing.biz. He has worked his way from Staff Writer to Editor across the two titles, having spent almost eight years with both and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing robert.hutchins@biz-media.co.uk or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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