Fears grow for future of electronics chain

Stride, a Portsmouth recruitment firm, on their fundraiser 'From left to right: Charlie Hall, Sophie Atkinson, Sam Jennings, Charlotte Northam (yellow top), Bethany Hollis (black top),  Mark Nagle

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FEARS are growing for the fate of 2,500 Maplin workers as hopes of finding a buyer for the stricken electronics chain fade and stores set to begin closing over the coming weeks.

The retailer, owned by private equity firm Rutland Partners, appointed PwC to oversee an administration at the end of February after rescue attempts failed.

Maplin has 217 stores in the UK including in Fratton in Portsmouth and, while PwC is attempting to find a buyer for the group, it is understood that no credible offer has materialised.

Chief executive Graham Harris said at the time that the retailer had been struggling to mitigate the impact of the pound’s devaluation since the Brexit vote.

It comes after Carpetright announced the prospect of store closures with Moss Bros and Mothercare also in the doldrums.

Fashion retailer New Look have agreed a restructuring plan with creditors which will see it shut 60 stores, and host of restaurant chains including Prezzo and burger chain Byron also plan to shut hundreds of branches.