Basebuy has a turnover in excess of£55 million a year, but registered a debt for the 2003 financial year of£10 million. The retailer runs 70 stores and is believed to have come under pressure from landlords.
BDO Stoy Hayward business restructuring specialists Dermot Power and David Swaden have been appointed as the retailer's administrators.
Some 600 jobs are at risk and the administrators warned that there will be redundancies. However, they were confident that the retailer will be sold as a going concern.
Power said: 'This is a well managed business, which has been trading profitably for a number of years. Intense competition on the high street for a share of a diminishing retail spend, together with some aggressive expansion into uneconomic rental units, are two factors that are largely responsible for the need of a reconstruction. This is another example of how a high-fixed-cost business cannot adapt quickly enough to rapidly intensifying competition on the high street.'