Biggest Covid failure

Shop jobs at risk as Arcadia falls into administration

Top Shop Edinburgh

Stores will remain open (pic: Terry Murden)

Arcadia group plunged into administration tonight becoming the biggest corporate casualty of the coronavirus pandemic.

The collapse of Sir Philip Green’s retail empire puts 13,000 jobs and hundreds of stores, including Top Shop, Burtons, Dorothy Perkins, Miss Selfrige and Wallis, at risk.  

Ian Grabiner, chief executive of Arcadia, said: “This is an incredibly sad day for all of our colleagues as well as our suppliers and our many other stakeholders.”

He added: “Our stores will remain open or reopen when permitted under the Government Covid-19 restrictions, our online platforms will be fully operational and supplies to all of our partners will continue.”

A statement from administrators Deloitte said: “No redundancies are being announced today as a result of the appointment and stores will continue to trade.

“The Joint Administrators are assessing all options available to the Group. 

Sir Philip Green

Sir Philip Green: said to be on his superyacht

“The administrators will be honouring all online orders made over the Black Friday weekend and will continue to be operating all the existing sale channels of the business.”   

Arcadia’s management will retain control of the day-to-day running of the business during the process, and its shops in England will reopen on Wednesday (2 December) when the coronavirus lockdown is lifted. They are trading normally in non-lockdown areas of Scotland.

However, the collapse could cost suppliers £250 million in unpaid invoices, it has been claimed.

One of the administrators, Matt Smith, said all options would be considered and they will be rapidly seeking expressions of interest and expect to identify one or more buyers to ensure the future success of the businesses. Sir Philip Green, 68, and understood to be staying on his superyacht, is not expected to bid for any of the assets.

It was announced earlier that Arcadia had turned down rival Frasers Group’s offer of a “lifeline” loan of up to £50 million.

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