More Evans Cycles stores to close after Sports Direct takeover

Three more branches of Evans Cycles are to close this month as the chain approaches the end of a review process following its sale to Sports Direct, the Press Association can reveal.

The stores are all in London, located in Victoria, Crouch End and Mark Lane in The City. They are scheduled to shut down on March 22.

One site in Spitalfields, East London has already closed.

It brings the total number of closures to eight, including the previously announced shops in Brentford, Fulham, Holborn and Kendal.

The number of store closures is significantly lower than was initially feared when Mike Ashley’s Sports Direct bought the business in a pre-pack administration deal last October.

The retail tycoon said at the time that as many as half of the 62 stores could close, threatening more than 600 jobs.

Steve Trowbridge, chief executive of Evans Cycles, told the Press Association the closure process was now nearing a conclusion.

“Following the purchase of Evans Cycles by Sports Direct, we have been undertaking a detailed review of the store portfolio to ensure each store is profitable and sustainable long-term for the business,” he said.

“The stores review process is now nearing a conclusion but unfortunately we have been unable to reach a satisfactory agreement with the landlords of our stores in Crouch End, Mark Lane and Victoria.

“Where possible, we will redeploy staff based at these stores to other areas within the business.”

Mr Trowbridge added the chain now has new openings in its sights.

He said: “In total, just eight store closures have been announced since the business was purchased.

“We are now turning our attention to returning to profitability and moving forward.

“Overall, this is now a period of growth for Evans Cycles as we look to improve our performance and focus on new store openings – two sites in Shirebrook and Glasgow are due to open in the next two months.”

The Shirebrook branch will be conveniently located for the company’s new owner as the Derbyshire town is also the home of the Sports Direct head office.