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Latest retail setback

Austin Reed closes after failing to attract viable offers

Austin ReedAll Austin Reed’s 120 stores will close with the loss of 1,000 jobs, say administrators for the high street group.

Edinburgh Woollen Mill, which was one of the potential buyers, instead only acquired the brand, together with the Country Casuals name and five concessions in Boundary Mills outlet villages in the north of England. This will involve 28 staff.

AlixPartners said it would wind down the retailer by the end of June as no viable offers had been received for the business.

Austin Reed, which has been on the high street for 116 years, fell into administration last month, citing cashflow issues.

Peter Savile, joint administrator, said: “Despite a significant number of interested parties coming forward during this period, it became clear as the process progressed that a viable solution which kept the business whole was not forthcoming.

“As a result we have made the difficult decision to cease trading the business and commence a wind-down of the estate.”

Austin Reed joined Bhs as the latest famous name to hit problems as they struggle to cope with the growth of online shopping.


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