Pension War Could End Toys R Us This Week

21 December, 2017, 01:10 | Author: Colin Gill
  • Toys R US To Close 87 Stores

Pension Protection Fund, or PPF, intends to vote against the retailer's restructuring plan, which centres on shutting at least 26 stores, potentially scuttling the proposal.

It has already announced a plan to close 26 United Kingdom branches for the loss of 800 jobs; this move could see the company's entire workforce of 3,200 on the scrapheap, just in time for Christmas.

THE future of Toys R Us - and 3,200 United Kingdom jobs - is hanging in the balance as MPs slam fat cat pay at the lossmaking retailer.

All the company's 84 toy stores, along with 3,200 jobs, would reportedly be at risk if the CVA is blocked.

The company had a cumulative pensions deficit of £18.4m in January and the pensions lifeboat could be put at risk if it didn't come up with the £9m that the PPF was requesting.

But it is believed Toys R Us does not have enough cash to meet this requirement.

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Malcolm Weir, director of restructuring and insolvency at the PPF said: "We continue to work closely with the trustees of the Toys R Us pension scheme and externally appointed advisors given the current CVA proposals".

Malcolm Weir, director of restructuring and insolvency at the PPF, said the PPF submitted its proxy vote on the proposed CVA, indicating they meant to vote against the proposals.

He added that: "The pension scheme is already underfunded and, if we were to vote in favour of the CVA, we would need actions taken that ensure the position of the pension scheme was not going to further weaken".

The questions add to pressure on Toys "R" Us U.K. management as they struggle to reach a deal with a pension bailout fund ahead of a key creditor vote on Thursday.

The offer however falls short of the PPF's demand for a £9m up-front contribution to the scheme - an equivalent of three years of company payments and associated levies - which according to sources and at time of reporting, Toys R Us has not found to pay.

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