Owner of menswear chain Officers Club, Blue Inc has called in the administrators to one of its subsidiaries – A.Levy & Son Limited (lease holder of Blue Inc’s stores). The company has filed a notice of intention to appoint Leonard Curtis as administrator after reports reveal strong competition has resulted in challenging trading conditions. Blue Inc plans to close around 65 stores, putting over 500 employees at risk of redundancy. The subsidiary will be sold through a pre-pack administration deal to enable negotiation and even cancellation of leases.
The mild weather over winter has contributed to the fall in sales of seasonal clothing, making it difficult for all retailers to keep profits up. CEO of Blue Inc, Steven Cohen, commented “Given the strength of online and the changing environment on the high street we decided now was the right time to evaluate the store portfolio. Other competitor action and failures have created a challenging environment.”
Update: 21/01/2016 – Neil Bennett and Alex Cadwallader of Leonard Curtis were appointed yesterday to the firm to oversee a restructuring deal while in administration. Over 1,500 jobs will be saved, however as some loss-making stores will be closing, around 580 employees will be made redundant. Cadwallader commented, “Blue Inc is in an even stronger position as a result of this deal and will be better placed to continue its growth plans”. “This restructuring deal represented the best outcome possible for the employees and the customers. The buyer has every intention of honouring vouchers and customer returns.”
If you are an employee of the business, please listen to the video below as it will tell you your rights as an employee. There is a link at the end of the video to the Government website which expands further on what you need to know.