Assurances sought on Toys R Us pension scheme

Assurances sought on Toys R Us pension scheme

Assurances sought on Toys R Us pension scheme

Struggling retailer Toys R Us could go into administration after being told to plough millions of pounds into its pension fund.

The toy retailer had asked Britain's state-backed safety net to support the company's voluntary arrangement procedure which would see at least 26 stores close, resulting in roughly 800 job losses.

Earlier this month, Toys R Us confirmed that it was set to close at least 26 stores in the United Kingdom as part of a proposed company voluntary arrangement (CVA).

Because of Toys R Us' troubles, its pension fund is automatically pushed into assessment by the PPF, which will give it a key vote at the meeting and potential to block the process.

Despite a recent streamlining of its United Kingdom operations, the warehouses of Toys R Us could grind to a complete halt this week due to a boring battle over pension provisions that could see the administrators called in by Thursday.

If the CVA doesn't get the go-ahead, the company could fall into administration, potentially putting all 3,200 United Kingdom jobs at risk of redundancy with less than a week to go before Christmas.

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However, the organisation has said discussions are still ongoing with Toys R Us and its advisers, and it is prepared to change its vote if suitable assurances are made on the future of the company's pension scheme.

Mr Weir added that: "Whatever the outcome of the CVA the pension scheme members can be reassured that they remain protected".

One source indicated that the additional contributions offered by Toys R Us over the next three months would be marginally superior to the likely returns to the PPF if it were to fall into administration.

Toys R Us Holdings' latest set of accounts filed at Companies House show a pension deficit of £18.4m in January, up from £10.25m a year before.

All Toys R Us shops will remain trading through Christmas, but if the CVA is approved, those stores affected will begin closing from the spring.

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