The Dragon's Den investor, Peter Jones, who bought the Jessops camera retailer six years ago out of administration, is looking to restructure its estate that will likely lead to shop closures. The property arm of the chain JR Prop Limited has filed an intention to appoint administrators with Resolve acting as the administrators according Sky News. It is then likely that the company will propose a Company Voluntary Arrangement in order to close down stores and renegotiate rents.
This is more bad news for the High Street but Jessops has struggled for many years and in the face of rising costs and increased online shopping for electronics it needs to change. Since this rescue deal, the firm has not made a single profit. In fact, losses have increased over the years dramatically. Just last year alone, rent costs increased to £4.7m across its 46 UK shops, leaving a reported loss of £13m.
A review of Jessops' business in recent months is understood to have led to a more comprehensive understanding of the financial performance of its store estate, insiders said.
Discussions with landlords have been underway for some time, although the move to appoint administrators is said to have been necessary in order to progress the restructuring.
In total, Jessops employs about 500 people with an unspecified number of jobs at risk from a restructuring of the business.
What they are proposing is in effect an administration followed by a CVA. Although it isn't quite clear which part of the corporate structure is going to be doing the CVA.