Woolworths ponders £1 sale of retail arm to Hilco

Troubled retailer Woolworths
is looking at selling its entire high street business to
Hilco for only £1, depending on how much
of Woolworths’ debt Hilco is prepared to assume.

Any deal will require the approval of the chain’s banking syndicate, which
recently appointed restructuring advisers from
to guide it on further loan negotiations with Woolworths.

Negotiations over the responsibility for the £100m pension fund deficit,
which Hilco will not want to assume, will also be difficult, but a solvent
demerger of its underperforming retail arm and its media and distribution
businesses would be a huge victory for a company that many believe will not
survive Christmas, The Times reports.

The deal would also require the approval of Woolworths’ shareholders, who
will be left with the remainder of the company, which is likely to be burdened
with the bulk of the pension liability and debt.

Further reading:

Woolworths lenders call in Deloitte

Woolworths FD leaves troubled retailer

The Times story

Related reading