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Retail chain Comet could close soon

Nov. 28, 2012 at 2:50 PM

LONDON, Nov. 28 (UPI) -- Business consulting firm Deloitte said without a buyer the British retail chain Comet may have to close by the end of the year.

There is a chance 5,000 workers may lose their jobs during the holiday season, The Guardian reported Wednesday.

The company has already closed 41 stores with the loss of 1,000 jobs. In the next few weeks the company plans to shutter 125 more stores, which would affect about 3,000 more employees.

The company reported that there are a few suitors discussing a possible purchase of company assets. "We remain in discussions with a small number of interested parties," said Chris Farrington, Comet's joint administrator.

"Should any acceptable offers be received for stores we will delay the closure process. Unfortunately, in the absence of a firm offer for the whole business, it has become necessary to begin making plans in case a sale is not concluded," he said.

"If a sale is not possible, we would envisage stores to begin closing in December," he added.

The administrator has already targeted Friday for closure of the company's distribution center, The Guardian said.

Three retailers are in discussions to buy some of Comet's assets, including Dixons Retail and TK Maxx, which could each purchase some outlets. Meanwhile, Appliances Online has been considering a purchase of Comet's online business.

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