January 13, 2020 10.27 am This story is over 20 months old

Skegness and Spalding jobs at risk as Beales seeks rescue deal

Turbulent times for the firm

Beales, one of Britain’s oldest department store chains, with shops in Skegness and Spalding, could collapse into administration if it cannot find a buyer and complete a rescue deal, putting around 1,000 jobs at risk.

According to multiple reports Beales, which began trading in Bournemouth in 1881, has said it may have to call in administrators as it considers its option.

Beales has 23 stores up and down the country and according to the BBC it is negotiating with its landlords to agree rent reductions. It is also in talks with two potential buyers – a rival retailer and a venture capital investor.

Beales also has a store in Spalding.

Poorer than expected trading over Christmas now threatens its survival. According to The Guardian, Beales also appointed the advisory firm KPMG in the final retail trading week before Christmas to help advise on its “strategic and financing options”.

Beales posted a £3.1 million loss in the year to March 2019, up from £1.3m for the year earlier.

In 2018 Tony Brown, chief executive of the retailer, led a management buyout of the firm.

On December 6, 2019 the firm confirmed the termination of the appointment of director Gellan Watt and appointed Keith Graeme Edelman in the same role.

Lincolnshire Reporter contacted Beales, but there was no reply by the time of publication.

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