Loss-making greengrocer Stokes has called in the administrators after an attempted restructure failed to cure its financial ills.

Ten stores were closed with the loss of 65 jobs after KPMG was this week appointed to find a buyer for the chain. That followed the closure of another 10 stores earlier this month. The Bristol-based independent continues to operate 17 stores.

In May the chain blamed tough competition from the major multiples after accounts filed at Companies House revealed it had lost more than £640,000 in 2009. Attempts to modernise the business failed to turns around its fortunes.

“Stokes found they attracted a different type of clientele, spend per head went up and the hope was that they would be able to replicate that across some of the most popular outlets,” said Richard Hill, the KPMG partner overseeing the sale.

“Unfortunately, they just ran out of time and money.”

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Greengrocer Stokes falls back into loss (22 May 2010)