Renfrew shopping mall Intu Braehead is at risk of closure after their owners negotiations with creditors collapsed and the company entered administration.
The centre has over 6,000 workers employed by various clothing, restaurant and leisure outlets including some big high street names like Marks & Spencer, Boots, Primark and Next.
Accountants KPMG, who were formally appointed as administrators, have confirmed the mall will continue to operate in the meantime.
Intu Properties had asked lenders for an 18-month break on debts but the talks collapsed while they tried to find a way to reduce their debts which are thought to amount to around £4.5billion.
MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, Gavin Newlands, said yesterday: “There has been some negativity with regard to Intu’s financial position for some time now and in many ways, sadly, there was an air of inevitability about the current position.
“However, having been in contact with Intu this morning I have been assured that Braehead will continue to trade and that there is no immediate threat to the centre.
“As we move out of lockdown and the Administrators work through the business I would very much hope for a positive future for the centre.”
Intu owns nine of the top 20 shopping centres in the UK. These include Lakeside in Essex, the Trafford Centre in Manchester and Gateshead’s Metrocentre. Property analysts predict that their portfolio will be broken up and sold off.
West of Scotland MSP, Maurice Golden, said: “This is a worrying time for the thousands of people employed at Braehead. The priority in the days and weeks ahead must be saving as many of those jobs as possible.
“I have already contacted the CEO of intu to offer any help I can as well as raising the issue on the Scottish Parliament.
“Although the SNP Government have classified Braehead as non-essential, for many workers reliant on jobs, for families and people of all ages reliant on the facility for wellbeing it is very much essential.
“I understand Braehead will still re-open next month, but we must explore every option to secure its long-term future. Especially with Renfrewshire having already being hit by job losses at both Rolls Royce and Glasgow Airport.”