Debenhams has been at the centre of many a headline over the last few days as it first went into administration and then Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley threatened legal action.

The retail boss held around 30% shares in the department store and had made a number of offers to the board to provide additional funding including an offer to underwrite a £200 million shareholder funding but all had been summarily rejected. All of Ashley’s offer required him to be named as chief executive of the high street chain and he had been vocal about calling for the entire board to be removed.

After rejecting his latest offer, the company went into pre-pack administration on Tuesday, with FTI Consulting named joint administrators. This act meant that all shareholders – including Sports Direct – saw their shares wiped out. The company was sold immediately and the new company, comprised of banks and bold holders continues to operate stores as restricting commences, though around 50 branches of the 165 in operation are expected to close.

Following the appointment of administrators, a furious Ashley called the move “a national scandal” and has threatened legal action to remove the administrators and reverse this week’s event. He believes FTI Consulting have a conflict of interest, having been previously involved with Debenhams.

Read the full story here:  https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/debenhams-administration-store-closures-jobs-a8861336.html   and here: https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/apr/10/mike-ashley-lawyers-debenhams-insolvency-reversed-administator

ASOS interim results see profits fall

ASOS has just released its interim results and they confirm previous predictions – the fashion retailers profits have tumbled in the six months to the end of February. Its profit before tax to 28 February was £4 million, a decline of 87% compared with the same period last year. In the same period, its revenue increased to £1.31 billion, which is a 14% growth.

Back in December, the retailer had warned of “significant deterioration” in trading ahead of Christmas meaning these results were not wholly unexpected.

Read the full story here: http://www.cityam.com/276045/fashion-retailer-asos-sees-profits-tumble-first-half-2019

Lush to close all social media accounts due to ‘algorithms’

Natural cosmetics brand Lush has said it will close all of its social media channels as of this week because it no longer wants to fight with ‘algorithms’ or pay to appear in News Feeds. The unusual move will see the high street chain close its Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts in the UK this week. It says that it wants to communicate with consumers in other channels and place social media conversations back in the hands of shoppers. After next week, this means shoppers will only be able to contact the brand via its website, over email or telephone with customer service queries.

Read the full story here: https://www.retailgazette.co.uk/blog/2019/04/lush-close-uk-social-media-channels/

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