Debenhams demands rent holiday as coronavirus dents footfall


Embattled department store chain Debenhams has heaped further misery on its landlords by requesting a rent holiday of up to five months as fears over coronavirus dent high street footfall.

Debenhams is already in the middle of a major restructuring process and has closed 22 stores in the last 12 months.

The retailer has called on landlords to give it an immediate five-month rent holiday to offset the “unprecedented pressures” being placed on the sector by the coronavirus pandemic.

Debenhams spokesman said: “All retailers are facing unprecedented pressures from the current situation and we are managing our operations to minimise risks to colleagues and customers whilst – as far as possible – trading as normal.”

Debenhams is also in the process of searching for a new chief executive after Stefaan Vansteenkiste stepped down earlier this month after less than a year in charge. 

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