52 job losses as Budgens announces closure dates for two Cambridgeshire stores

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Two Cambridgeshire Budgens supermarkets are to close this week with the loss of 52 jobs.

Food Retailer Operations Limited (FROL), an arm of business restructuring specialists Hilco Capital, appointed PwC as administrator last month after experiencing ‘difficult trading conditions’.

But the accountancy firm has failed to find a buyer for the group.

A total of 815 staff have begun the redundancy process.

Administrators are closing the convenience stores only nine months after the supermarket was bought from the Co-op.

The Wisbech Budgens will close on Thursday March 9 with the loss of 25 jobs and the St Neots branch will close on the same day with the loss of 27 jobs.

A statement posted today said: “Since its acquisition of the stores from Co-op in July 2016, the Company had experienced difficult trading conditions. This resulted in the Company being placed into administration despite sustained efforts to make the business more commercially viable.

“Following their appointment, the Administrators have been assessing interest in the business. As a result, following the closure of nine stores at the weekend, the remaining 25 stores will, regrettably, cease trading over the course of the next two weeks with the loss of the remaining 611 jobs.”

Mike Denny, Joint Administrator, PwC, said: “Unfortunately, we have been unable to find a buyer and it is not commercially viable to continue trading the stores.

“We are working closely with the Co-op, USDAW and the relevant government agencies to ensure that all employees receive the maximum levels of practical and financial support through the redundancy process.”

The Budgens brand is owned by food wholesale company Booker and is being taken over by Tesco.