UPDATED: Paperchase at Westgate centre in Oxford is closing


Paperchase at Oxford’s Westgate centre at risk of closure
The Paperchase store at Westgate centre in Oxford (pictured above) is at risk of closure

The Paperchase store at Westgate Shopping Centre in Oxford is closing after its parent company fell into administration. And the same goes for the Paperchase store on Bell Street in Henley-on-Thames.

The High Street stationery chain has faced a challenging few years, exacerbated by rising costs and falling sales.

The company appointed administrators from Begbies Traynor to oversee the insolvency process. And Tesco bought the Paperchase brand and intellectual property just hours after it fell into administration.

However, the groceries giant did not acquire the chain’s retail shops in the UK and Ireland and will instead sell the stationer’s goods in its own stores across the UK.

This move means all 106 of the Paperchase stationery stores across the UK are likely to close, with 820 staff facing redundancy.

Earlier, the administrators had said: “On 31 January, Mark Fry, Kirstie Provan and Gary Shankland, of Begbies Traynor, were appointed as joint administrators of Aspen Phoenix Newco Limited, which trades as Paperchase.

“Unfortunately, despite a comprehensive sales process, no viable offers were received for the company, or its business and assets, on a going concern basis.

“However, there has been significant interest in the Paperchase brand and attendant intellectual property.

“The joint administrators will continue trading the company’s operations in the short term, with all stores remaining open and trading as normal.”

Paperchase launched a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) restructuring in March 2022 in an attempt to turn around its fortunes but saw this heavily impacted by the pandemic.

A move into administration was considered earlier this month after poor sales in November and December. Trading in those two months usually accounted for 40% of the company’s annual sales.

Jan Marchant, Managing Director of home and clothing at Tesco, said: “Paperchase is a well-loved brand by so many, and we’re proud to bring it to Tesco stores across the UK.

“We have been building our plans to bring more brands and inspiration to the ranges we currently offer, and this will help us to take those plans further.”

Paperchase’s administrators, Begbies Traynor, have said that the stationery stores would remain open for now, and an update will be issued in due course.

Earlier, it told customers they only had two weeks to redeem their gift cards.

Trending news

Latest news

More from The Oxford Magazine