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Ethel Austin Stores Taken Over

In a move which was as quick as it was unexpected it has been announced that Elaine McPherson, the former head of clothing chain MK One has acquired the Ethel Austin chain, safeguarding 2.500 jobs for the future. The company went into administration last month with very few people giving the administrators any chance of selling the company as a going concern.

While Elaine McPherson has a great track record in retail and is as well prepared as anyone to turn the business around, it will not be easy. The future strategy of the group is unclear at the moment as Ms McPherson has ordered a full review of the business and the options open.

The Ethel Austin group has a history which goes back to 1934 and while its headquarters still reside at its original Liverpool base, the group has exposure to all parts of the UK. The company was turning over £150 million a year prior to the problems last month and there is the basis of a good long term investment if the correct direction and strategy can be found.

Quite what went wrong at Ethel Austin remains to be seen but the company and the workforce seem to have a new lease of life.....for now.

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