Hertfordshire-based Mothercare confirms plans to close 50 stores

The closures will result in hundreds of job losses

The closures will result in hundreds of job losses

Mothercare employs about 3,000 people across 137 outlets.

The household favourite has seen sales and profits hammered by intense competition from supermarket groups and online retailers in its main United Kingdom market as well as by rising costs.

The baby chain, which will lay out details of the overhaul in its results on Thursday, ditched Mr Newton-Jones as chief executive last month, with then-chairman Alan Parker having said although he had "done a good job, we think we can do even better going forward".

David Wood, the man brought in to replace him, becomes managing director.

He continues: "The potential for the Mothercare brand in the United Kingdom, benefitting from a restructured store estate, and internationally remains significant".

Creditors will need to approve the company voluntary arrangement (CVA) in order to close stores and cut rents, another measure which has been agreed with landlords. "The colleagues in head office and in stores whose jobs are now at risk must be watching on with a mixture of disbelief and fury", she states.

The firm now trades from 137 United Kingdom stores, having had almost 400 a decade ago.

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The store closures will leave it with 78 outlets in the United Kingdom by 2020.

The struggling store chain said the refinancing and restructuring of the United Kingdom store portfolio through company voluntary arrangements of certain subsidiaries will allow the business to return to a more stable footing and accelerate the transformation towards a viable and sustainable future.

"However, we had no alternative to executing a CVA".

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

"The recent financial performance of the business, impacted in particular by a large number of legacy loss making stores within the United Kingdom estate, has resulted in an unsustainable situation.meaning the group was in clear need of an appropriate resolution", said interim executive chairman Clive Whiley.

The company also has secured maturity extension to its committed debt facilities of GBP67.5 million and GBP8 million in new loans from some large shareholders.

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