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Mike Ashley's Frasers Group joins call for business rates reform

Frasers said some of its stores pay up to four times more in rates than they should.

Frasers Group PLC -

Frasers Group PLC (LON:FRAS) has added its voice to calls from Britain’s high street shop owners to slash business rates.

The Mike Ashley-owned former Sports Direct said the high street is on ‘life support’ and transitional relief needs an urgent overhaul.

“The current system whereby downward transitions of just a few per cent a year means that the correct amount is never reached, or even close to, punishes those in greatest need of relief.”

Frasers said some of its stores pay up to four times more in rates than they should.

Traditional relief is a significant contributor to the 'dire straits' the High Street currently finds itself in, added the House of Fraser, Evans Cycles and Game owner.

Frasers' comments follow a letter sent to the government by trade body the British Retail Consortium and 52 chains demanding action on business rates.

As well as reforming transitional relief, the BRC wants a freeze in the business rates multiplier and “Improvement Relief” introduced to help the sector, which it claims has subsidised other industries by almost £550mln in the past three years.

Signatories to the letter included Boots, Debenhams, Dixons Carphone, Greggs, Marks & Spencer and J Sainsbury.

Quick facts: Frasers Group PLC

Price: 477.6 GBX

Market: LSE
Market Cap: £2.49 billion

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