HIGH-STREET fashion chain Select has plunged into administration, putting jobs at risk across the country.

The appointment of administrator Quantuma comes almost a year after the retailer resorted to a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) to slash its rent bill.

The struggling retailer operates from 169 stores across the UK, including one in Church Square Shopping Centre, St Helens.

The chain and is owned by Turkish entrepreneur Cafer Mahiroglu who bought the business out of administration in 2008.

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Select trades as a value ladies' fashion retailer, targeting 18-35 year olds, and has an annual turnover of £77 million. Up to 1,800 jobs are reportedly at risk nationwide.

"High street conditions" have impacted the outlet's attempts to deliver on the turnaround plan it started with the CVA last year, after posting a £15.5 million loss for the 18 months to December 2017.

No redundancies have been made as a result of the administration, while options for the future of the business, including a possible sale, are currently being assessed.

Andrew Andronikou, joint administrator at Quantuma, said: "We will continue to trade Select whilst we assess all options available to the business, with the aim of achieving the optimum outcome for all stakeholders.

"Options include a sale of the business as a going concern, in addition to entering into discussions with those parties who have already expressed interest in acquiring the business."

The administration comes amid a period of turmoil for high-street fashion retailers, as they face rising costs and falling sales.

Philip Green's Arcadia fashion empire is exploring a CVA to turn around his Topshop, group. Topshop also has a branch in St Helens' Church Square.