Kwik Save has secured a fresh refinancing package to rescue it from the brink of collapse - after it emerged Irish property company Howard Holdings had pulled out of a deal to invest £70m in the retail chain.

Details of the new investment by a consortium of private investors were finalised this week, enabling Kwik Save to withdraw an application to be placed into administration at the last minute.

Newly appointed chairman and chief executive Paul Niklas said the fresh cash injection would enable Kwik Save to thrive.

"I have succeeded in saving the business," he told The Grocer.

"We have secured brand new investment and there are lots of exciting developments in the pipeline.

"I will have to take some difficult decisions over the coming months, but I believe in this company and we are in it for the long haul."

Niklas, who was previously MD of Kwik Save for just three months last year, also said that being more open and honest with suppliers and employees would be key to getting the business back on track.

But he admitted store closures could be on the cards. Twenty three of the chain's 251 stores have been shut down in recent weeks.

"We will have to do some form of rationalisation to protect our business and our employees," he said, adding that he expected to receive further investment in the very near future.

The original Howard Holdings deal was only revealed last month. A source close to Kwik Save said Howard Holdings had pulled out of the deal after discovering the true state of Kwik Save's financial and property affairs.

"Howard Holdings started the process of due diligence but it opened up a can of worms," he said.

"It was only ever interested in Kwik Save for its property, and when it found that it didn't have much it backed away."

Howard Holdings refused to comment.

TNS Worldpanel data for the 12 weeks to 25 February shows Kwik Save's market share is down to 0.2%.