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13 February 2013, 12:37
Over 2,500 jobs at Leeds fashion firm Republic could go after the collapsed this morning.
Ernst & Young, administrator to the group, said the 121 shops would continue to trade while it looks for a buyer for the business.
Republic, which started as a men's denim retailer in 1986 under the Best Jeans brand in Leeds, was hit by a “sudden and rapid decline” in sales at the end of last month after poor trading results over the autumn.
Ernst said it had made 150 staff redundant at Republic's headquarters in Leeds.
Administrator Hunter Kelly said: “Republic suffered poor trading results in the autumn, and whilst sales picked up in December there has been a sudden and rapid decline in sales in late January.
He added: “We will continue to trade Republic, with a view to selling the business as a going concern. The brand Republic is well recognised, particularly in the North. It has a powerful website offering, owns well-known brand names, and has some very attractive and profitable stores.”