Mike Ashley looks to keep 80% of House of Fraser stores open

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Retail tycoon Mike Ashley has revealed he plans to keep 80 per cent of House of Fraser stores open for business, according to The Sun.

The figure brings some much-needed clarification to the number of store closures the beleaguered department store will face.

Ashley bought the business out of administration last week for £90 million.

Since then, he declined to give specific store closure numbers, although he pledged to keep “as many stores open as possible” of the 59 stores in HoF’s property portfolio.

According to The Sun, Ashley has now said of his 80 per cent target: “In a year’s time you can hold my feet to the fire on that.”

More than half of the stores were set for closure before the Sports Direct owner stepped in last Friday.

Ashley now has ambitious rejuvenation plans for the 169-year-old business, with aims to turn it into a “Harrods of the high street” by bringing in luxury concessions such as Gucci and Prada.

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