Debenhams is reported to have brought in a specialist firm to draw up plans that could see it close all stores and make all staff redundant.
According to Sky News Debenhams has appointed specialists Hilco Capital to draw up a plan for what to do if the business cannot be sold.
The contingency plan could see Debenhams liquidated as a worst-case scenario – potentially meaning 14,000 jobs are at risk and all stores could close.
That would be the worst outcome if all other options fail.
This week Debenhams announced another 2,500 job cuts at its 120 stores.
It has already axed 4,000 jobs.