Fashion chains Peacocks and Jaeger have fallen into administration, putting almost 500 shops and more than 4,700 jobs at risk.
The retailers - which were both part of billionaire Philip Day’s EWM Group retail empire - confirmed on 19 November that FRP Advisory have been appointed as administrators.
No store closures confirmed
The administrators have said that no store closures, or staff redundancies, have yet been confirmed.
Peacocks currently operates 423 stores with 4,369 staff, while Jaeger runs 76 stores and concessions, and employs 347 staff.
Mr Day’s EWM Group has already placed its Edinburgh Woollen Mill and Ponden Home business into administration earlier this month.
The group had bought more time for Peacocks and Jaeger in the hope it could find a new buyer or investor for part or all of the business, with the High Court granting the two businesses two extra weeks to find a solution. This period has now passed, but FRP joint administrator Tony Wright is still positive about securing a future for the retailers.
He said, “Jaeger and Peacocks are attractive brands that have suffered the well-known challenges that many retailers face at present.
“We are in advanced discussions with a number of parties and working hard to secure a future for both businesses.”
‘Discussions with potential buyers’
The EWM Group has said it will continue to support administrators to find the best possible outcome for the businesses and has had discussions with a number of potential buyers.
However, ongoing lockdown restrictions have made the process more difficult and drawn out than was hoped.
In a statement, EWM Group said, “In recent weeks we have had constructive discussions with a number of potential buyers for Peacocks and Jaeger Ltd but the continuing deterioration of the retail sector due to the impact of the pandemic and second lockdown have made this process longer and more complex than we would have hoped.
“While those talks are ongoing, we no longer have an option to extend the standstill agreement originally imposed by the High Court six weeks ago any further.
“Therefore as directors we have taken the desperately difficult decision to place Peacocks and Jaeger into administration while those talks continue.”