Tie Rack is to begin closing its British stores with the potential loss of 200 jobs and the closure of 44 shops.

According to Sky News, the men's clothing retailer is to close down in the UK after its investors, Italian company the Fingen Group, decided to sell off the firm.

"Following a period of prolonged decline in Tie Rack's fortunes, it is with regret that we today announce this closing-down sale," a spokesman for the company said.

"Management are working with staff to provide support during this difficult time."

The employer's accounts for the year to the end of January 2012 show a pre-tax loss of £6.8m ($10.9m, €8.1m) on a turnover of £68.1m

Tie Rack had shops in 31 countries at its peak, including the US, Canada and France.

Its 44 UK outlets had been trading for more 30 years.

The announcement follows the news of other high street heavyweights, Blockbuster and Barratts Shoes, falling into administration.

Blockbuster is to axe 72 stores and cut 452 jobs across the UK, according to its administrator.