The future of House of Fraser Belfast has been confirmed as the department store owner Sports Direct has agreed a new long-term lease on the store and committed to a £10m refurbishment.
Michael Murray, head of elevation at Sports Direct, said the move marked “a significant moment in the turnaround of House of Fraser, and we are committed to investing and remodelling this popular store.”
“The landlord [Commerz Real] was very proactive and reasonable, and as a result we will elevate and invest in the store in order to create Belfast’s first luxury department store,” Murray added.
The future of the Victoria Square store had been uncertain but the move secures the 500 jobs of staff and concession staff.
Since acquiring House of Fraser out of administration last August, Sports Direct, led by retail tycoon Mike Ashley, has secured the future of 42 of its 59 stores. Ashley had said he hoped to save 47 stores, which compares to a closure of 31 stores which had been proposed by its previous owner, Nanjing Cenbest.