Page last updated at 10:23 GMT, Friday, 5 February 2010

Losses slashed at Hunter empire

USC shop in Edinburgh
The USC chain was rescued after falling into administration

The business empire founded by Sir Tom Hunter has cut its losses by more than £100m, latest figures have revealed.

West Coast Capital has interests in the shoe chain Office, House of Fraser and the USC fashion chain which was rescued a year ago.

The latest figures for the year to the end of March 2009 showed that West Coast Holdings made a loss of £83.2m, down from £190m in 2008.

The company said it was now considering acquisitions.

Sir Tom Hunter founded West Coast Capital in March 2001 and principally invests in retail, property and leisure.

The empire has suffered during the recession, but losses have been cut by selling-off some of the businesses.

The D2 fashion chain and the Qube footwear group were both sold off in 2008.

D2 went into administration last month although more than half the stores and hundreds of jobs were subsequently saved in a management buyout.

The USC fashion chain was one of the first retail casualties of the recession.

The administrators were called in in December 2008.

Dundonald Holdings Ltd, which put together the rescue package for most of the stores, is another business interest of Sir Tom Hunter.

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