City staff among 2200 to lose jobs as JJB fails

MORE than 100 JJB employees have been axed in the West of Scotland as the company went into administration.

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Three stores in Glasgow closed yesterday, with a loss of 44 jobs, as well as stores in Clydebank, Ayr, East Kilbride, Kilmarnock and Wishaw.

But the Silverburn JJB and the Cumbernauld stores are among 20 UK stores which will transfer to Sports Direct, saving their staff.

Accountancy firm KPMG has been appointed administrators to the three firms, JJB Group, Blane Leisure and SSL Retail which make up sports retailer, JJB Sports.

The blue shutters outside the Argyle Street JJB store were pulled down and the store look closed and deserted yesterday afternoon.

A white paper sign attached to the wall beside the store, told customers that accountancy firm KPMG had been appointed joint administrators for JJB on October 1.

It warned customers that "goods sold before the appointment of the joint administrators cannot be refunded or exchanged".

In Sauchiehall Street, JJB was also closed, with the same notice pinned nearby.

The store in Silverburn Shopping Centre was fully staffed and open for business as usual, yesterday.

The administrators agreed to sell 20 of JJB's stores, the brand and the website, to Sports Direct International.

But 133 stores across the UK closed yesterday, resulting in around 2200 redundancies. A total of 167 employees, including eight in the West of Scotland, one for each store, have been retained to assist the administrators.

Richard Fleming, UK Head of Restructuring at KPMG, said: "Successive attempts to restructure the business, both financially and operationally, have not been enough to prevent the company falling into administration."

Mr Fleming said a buyer could be found for only 20 stores, adding: "All staff made redundant as a result of store closures have had their arrears of wages and holiday entitlements paid in full."

David McCorquodale, corporate finance partner who led the sales process, added: "We hope to be able to sell the leasehold interests of some of the remaining stores, which may result in re-employment of some staff."

Employees can call a 24 hour helpline on 0845 3022538.


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