Staff in the dark over JJB’s future

STAFF at JJB in Dundalk are in the dark as to the future of the business locally, The Dundalk Democrat can reveal.

STAFF at JJB in Dundalk are in the dark as to the future of the business locally, The Dundalk Democrat can reveal.

On Friday the company, which has its head office in Wigan, announced that it would struggle to survive unless its landlords agreed to a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) to enable to it to close up to 95 stores.

JJB said it had identified 45 shops which were no longer viable with the future of a further 50 under review. The closures of these stores would enable a core of 150 to survive.

A CVA is a legal deal that enables companies to ditch leases, or change the rental terms on poorly performing stores. Even if they are all agreed to, the company still needs to raise a further £31 million from investors to meet its funding needs until April.

No specific stores were mentioned in the company’s announcement to the Stock Exchange on Friday when it said it would “no longer be able to trade as a going concern” if the two step survival plan were not effected, but Dundalk’s position in the Republic of Ireland immediately puts it into focus.

Although the company have recruited new management in both the gym and store of its Dundalk chain in recent months, speculation about the company’s future in the retail park has remained for some time.

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