30 June 2020
It is rumoured (from an article in The Daily Mail) that TM Lewin has collapsed into administration, with 600 staff set to lose their jobs. Coronavirus is said to have caused the collapse since rents could not be paid after its stores shut in March following lockdown measures.
The shirt makers’ 66 stores will disappear from the UK high street, though its online business will remain.
An employee shared that staff received an email just 25 minutes before a MS teams meeting where the 110 staff who were on the 4-minute call, were told they were being made redundant. She said ‘’there was no chance for anyone to ask questions or have any say. We were told to mute ourselves and turn off our cameras for the meeting.’’
29 June 2020
TM Lewin’s’ new owner is said to have drafted in restructuring experts too seek an arrangement that may lead to the closure of the majority of its 66 stores.
The Sunday Times reported that restructuring firm, ReSolve, was called in for the menswear retailer to make the brand move online with just a few stores.
It is likely that a pre-pack administration will be used. If this were to be the case, hundreds of jobs are at risk. A pre-pack is when the business and assets are acquired by a connected or third party at the same time as going into administration, the sale being ‘pre-arranged’. During this period of the Covid-19 pandemic, other retailers have used this insolvency tool to be re-acquired by its owners; Quiz, Go Outdoors and Monsoon Accessorize.
SCP Private Equity bought TM Lewin for an undisclosed sum last month. Commercial property consultants from Cedar Dean were hired to handle negotiations with landlords, aiming to secure rent cuts.