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USC rescued from administration

USC has been bought out of administration by its original owner West Coast Capital this afternoon.

Insolvency firm PFK, which is handling the administration of USC, confirmed it had sold 43 of USC's 58 stores to a company called Dundonald Holdings, which is owned by Sir Tom Hunter's West Coast Capital. Some 1,100 jobs have been saved.

The remaining 15 stores will be operated by PFK while a buyer is sought

USC is the latest fashion retail chain to fall victim to extremely difficult trading. Envy, one of USC's direct competitors, completed a similar pre-pack administration deal earlier this month. Meanwhile kidswear chain Adams is on the brink of administration and menswear chain The Officers Club was rescued from administration by its management

PFK administrator Bryan Jackson said: "The impact of the credit crunch is continuing to spread into the wider economy beyond the property and financial sectors. As has been well publicised retail operators are facing extremely challenging times. Given these circumstances this is a positive deal which retains the majority of jobs and shops to ensure the core part of the USC business will continue with further investment to assist in the future survival of the remaining 43 stores."

West Coast Capital and USC chief executive Jim McGonigle were unavailable for comment.

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