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Mixed news for shop jobs

PUBLISHED: 14:56 12 November 2008 | UPDATED: 10:15 23 August 2010

A BUYER for several stores owned by a trouble textile company has been secured after hundreds of job loses and store closures. The Roseby s store, in New Road, Gravesend, is among 77 outlets nationwide to be sold to Duvetco, a subsidiary of Edinburgh Woo

A BUYER for several stores owned by a trouble textile company has been secured after hundreds of job loses and store closures.

The Roseby's store, in New Road, Gravesend, is among 77 outlets nationwide to be sold to Duvetco, a subsidiary of Edinburgh Woollen Mill, the retail chain.

The deal has saved 495 jobs across the country, but the Dartford store in High Street, Dartford, was not part of the sale and is set to close.

KPMG, the joint administrators of the Roseby's group announced the breakthrough on Friday after months of negotiations.

Branches in Bexleyheath and Welling (known as Knightingale) are among 59 closures with the loss of 310 staff, but Orpington is among those saved.

Joint administrator Howard Smith said: "Clearly it is unfortunate that further redundancies have been unavoidable.

"But in difficult trading conditions, the sale of a number of stores has been secured, which will safeguard many jobs and help achieve a return for creditors."

Rosebys, which sells soft furnishings, curtains and bed linen, went into administration in September due to "difficult trading conditions".

Speaking at the time, Mr Smith said: The business is continuing to trade as normal while we review the financial position and seek a going concern sale.

He added: "In common with many retailers, the group has experienced difficult trading conditions, leading to continuing losses.

"Rosebys has recently sought to refinance, but this did not prove possible in the current economic climate."

In the year up until March 31 the company made losses of £6million and owes trade creditors about £11.7million and inter-company creditors £19million.

At the beginning of October administrators confirmed they had 45 expressions of interest in the business, but at the end of each week scores of closures were announced.

KPMG has set up a Rosebys employee hotline - 0845 094 1777 - to provide information and support to employees who have been made redundant.

michael.adkins@archant.co.uk

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