Today it emerged ModelZone is poised to appoint an administrator, with Deloitte waiting in the wings. Retail Week takes a look at the ModelZone business.

  • ModelZone was originally known as Model Aerodrome and was based in Brighton.
  • It wasn’t until the late 1990s when Model Aerodrome changed its name and rebranded as ModelZone. Its headquarters are located in Lancing, West Sussex.
  • In July 2009 LDC supported the £5.6m management buyout of the company, which was led by chief executive David Mordecai - the current chief executive of Tobar which owns toy retailer Hawkins Bazaar – and non-executive chairman Terry Norris.
  • Modelzone Holdings owns the retailer, which is led by chief executive Martin Carr who joined in August last year.
  • It now has 50 stores which are typically 1,200 sq ft, although its store in Birmingham is 7,000 sq ft.
  • It sells model railways, collectables, plastic model kits and various radio controlled model vehicles.
  • Sources told Retail Week that the business collapsed after its owners tried to expand its store estate too quickly. It had just 25 stores at the time of the buyout and this has doubled in the three years under its ownership.
  • ModelZone opened its new Oxford Street flagship store at the beginning of June, after closing its Holborn flagship due to site redevelopment.