Administrators of ailing book chain Borders has warned that all 1,100 staff would lose their jobs on Christmas Eve unless a buyer is found this week.
MCR is in “advanced talks” with a number of would-be purchasers over certain stores but added that any deals had yet to be finalised.
The firm has 45 Borders and Books Etc stores across the UK which will close on December 22 unless a sale is agreed, with staff finishing work on December 24, MCR said.
Borders went into administration at the end of last month after coming under severe pressure from internet competition during the past year.
MCR partner Phil Duffy said: “Staff consultation will continue throughout this week and a further update will be given for each store at the end of the week.
“We have reassured staff that they will be paid for all of their work during the administration.”
Nearly 40 head office staff at Borders have already lost their jobs since MCR was appointed, although the stores continued to trade.
The business has struggled with severe cash flow pressure this year after sales declines accelerated.
Stock levels were also hit as several of the company’s suppliers stopped or reduced its credit limits, while a number of credit insurers reduced their cover for the firm.
The chain opened in the UK in 1997 and was originally owned by the US book giant of the same name.
But the UK and Ireland arm was sold to buyout group Risk Capital Partners - headed by Channel 4 chairman Luke Johnson - in 2007.
Management, led by chief executive Philip Downer and finance director Mark Little, then bought the group back with financing from Valco Capital earlier this year.