While it was announced earlier in the month that there will be no New Zealand bookstore closures, the administrators of REDgroup Retail, Ferrier Hodgson, has put New Zealand’s biggest book retailing chains are up for sale.

Advertisements calling for interested parties to come forward have begun appearing in national newspapers in New Zealand and overseas.

Expressions of interest have been called for 74 Whitcoulls stores, nine Bennetts stores and five Borders stores.

Steve Sherman, Ferrier Hodgson partner and administrator of REDgroup Retail, said the sales campaign will enable the administrators to examine what options may be available for creditors.

“These brands are so well known in New Zealand, it should come as no surprise a number of parties have come forward interested to know more,” he said.

“The expression of interest process will establish a more formal framework for us to manage that interest.”

He said there have already been a number of unsolicited approaches regarding the New Zealand business.

According to Sherman, over the next week the sales campaign will help the administrators develop a better understanding of the level of market interest in the book retailing businesses.

“To some degree this is about testing the waters and potentially establishing the market value of the business,” he said.

“But it will also allow us to develop a well-informed opinion about the best course of action for creditors.”

This announcement follows the administrators' decision to also sell REDgroup Retail's Australian network.