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Value shops eye Mothercare sites

A handful of companies are circling Mothercare to buy small batches of stores from the struggling childcare retailer.

It is thought a number of pound shops and card shops including Card Factory are hoping to take over the stores.

Mothercare confirmed last week that it was to close more than 110 shops and cut the rent on 40 stores by March 2013 – as forecast by The Independent on Sunday earlier this month.

It is moving out of the high street for out-of- town sites.

Value and pound shops are scooping up stores from less successful retailers. Ernst & Young, the joint administrator of DIY chain Focus, has sold 11 stores to value retailer B&M Bargains.

HMV has agreed the long awaited deal to sell Waterstone's for £53m to the group's 6.7 per cent shareholder, Alexander Mamut. But analysts said HMV is not out of trouble as its debt still stands at £170m.