Fashion chains Oasis and Warehouse collapse into administration

15 April 2020, 17:28

Oasis and Warehouse have collapsed into administration
Oasis and Warehouse have collapsed into administration. Picture: PA

By Megan White

Fashion chains Oasis and Warehouse have collapsed into administration, making them the latest high street name to fail during the coronavirus lockdown.

Over 2,000 jobs across 92 stores and 437 concessions could be at risk, although administrators said the majority of workers would remain furloughed for now.

But 200 were made redundant on Wednesday by Deloitte, as administrators try and find a buyer.

Online trading continues "in the short term", the company added.

Hash Ladha, chief executive of Oasis Warehouse, said: "This is a situation that none of us could have predicted a month ago, and comes as shocking and difficult news for all of us.

"We as a management team have done everything we can to try and save the iconic brands that we love."

The retailer was owned by Kaupthing, the failed Icelandic bank, and its own administrators had tried to sell Oasis Warehouse three years ago, but this was later abandoned.

Rob Harding, Joint Administrator at Deloitte, said: "Covid-19 has had a devastating effect on the entire retail industry and not least the Oasis Warehouse group.

"Despite management's best efforts over recent weeks, and significant interest from potential buyers, it has not been possible to save the business in its current form."

The coronavirus pandemic is eating into British high street businesses, which were already feeling the pinch before the outbreak started.

Debenhams last week entered administration for the second time in a year in a bid to protect itself during the shutdown.

The company's 142 stores were already closed and most of the 22,000 members of staff on furlough before the owners pushed the business into administration.

The company said at the time: "This move will protect Debenhams from the threat of legal action that could have the effect of pushing the business into liquidation while its 142 UK stores remain closed in line with the Government's current advice regarding the Covid-19 pandemic."

The coronavirus crisis has also forced Flybe to collapse, and Carluccio's and BrightHouse have also closed their doors.

Other businesses are hoping to be able to reopen when the lockdown is lifted.

But some are now concerned at the high costs needed to reopen and restock stores once any restrictions are eased.

Landlords and retailers are also at an impasse, with reports that some landlords are threatening court action over unpaid bills.

Retailers are also keen to ensure they can access the Government's furlough scheme funding ahead of payday at the end of the month.

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