Debenhams seeks rent cuts on 20 stores

Debenhams rent cuts store closures CVA
Debenhams fell into administration in April, and pushed through a restructuring
// Debenhams is seeking rent cuts of up to 25%
// It is working with property agencies CWM and Time Retail

Debenhams has revealed it is seeking fresh rent cuts of up to 25 per cent on 20 of its stores in exchange for scrapping break clauses in the leases.

The department store chain is working with property agencies CWM and Time Retail as it goes through its CVA, and is currently seeking for reductions on both service charge and rent.

Debenhams fell into administration in April, and pushed through a restructuring, sanctioning 22 store closures and rent cuts of up to 50 per cent on a further 105.


It had to borrow a sum of £50 million more in October.

Debenhams’ creditors have already agreed to rent reductions and lease negotiations on 105 of its 166 stores, under the terms of the CVA.

No additional closures are currently planned and the rest of the 50 stores will not close until 2021.

“As previously announced, we plan to close around 50 stores,” a Debenhams spokeswoman said.

“The first 22 are closing in January 2020 as planned, with the rest of the 50 to be confirmed following lease break discussions with our landlords.”

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  1. Devastated for them all. I’ve shopped there since I was a little girl with my grandma when she worked there in the Manchester store and now I regularly take my grandchildren to the same store. Praying for a miracle for all concerned

  2. Debenhams are such a poor quality store with no unique selling point. It’s a big shame for the staff mainly women and young people and those seeking a stepping stone in to work. Debenhams key problem like many other retailers. Selling the freehold of the stores to short term boost profits but then locked in to ridiculous high rental leasing costs which are proving unsustainable with a weak economy and the rise of online. The same has happened with M and S. All of this is down to a number of factors including business rates.

    Landlords with closing stores have other plans anyway so many of those closing stores think Canterbury and Folkestone for example won’t be sitting empty as they are being redeveloped in to apartments above and Hannington Lane style ( Brighton) boutique retail for the Canterbury store and a multiplex, offices and leisure and apartments at Folkestone.

    The Ashford store is rumoured to be a Primark or another department store type store. Canterbury Debenhams was paying over a £1.2m a year in rent not including business rates and other costs over three buildings one sub let to Cotswold and it just wasn’t making the money. The above two stores were legacy freehold properties owned by Debenhams and then sold off when it became part of Burton Group in the 80’s and then divested as Debenehams PLC which it was until recently.


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