Closure now on the cards

Clinton's Leven High Street card shop
Clinton's Leven High Street card shop

LEVEN’s Clinton Cards looks set to close after administrators sold 397 of the beleaguered greeting card chain’s stores, but the High Street branch wasn’t one of them.

Peter Saville, Simon Freakley and Anne O’Keefe, of Zolfo Cooper, announced on Thursday that Lakeshore Lending Ltd., a subsidiary of American Greetings Corporation, had bought the stores, along with the brands and assets of Clinton Cards.

The remaining unpurchased stores, of which Leven is one, will stay under control of Zolfo Cooper as it looks for buyers.

This may prove difficult as prospective bids from WH Smith and Card Factory haven’t materialised, and it appeared unlikely they would be interested in Leven’s store as they already have outlets in the town.

There is some surprise at Leven not being included in the sale, as the administrators did not list it last month as one of 14 Scottish shop closures. However, they had stated up to 350 less profitable stores could close, and it now seems that Leven is one of them.

The administrators added they would now focus their efforts on these premises.

Clinton Cards and its subsidiary companies, which included fellow retailer Birthdays, fell into administration last month with a bank debt of £35 million and administrators stating the company had made losses of £130m since 2004.

Commenting after the announcement of the 397 store sales, Peter Saville said: “We would like to thank the staff for their dedication and patience throughout what has been an understandably difficult time for all concerned.”