Jeweller Thomas Sabo plots five store closures
If anyone needed more proof of the challenges facing UK retailers over the past year German jewellery brand Thomas Sabo has joined the long list of companies launching a company voluntary agreement (CVA).
The watch and jewellery company will try to trim its 22-strong UK store portfolio by asking landlords to accept reduced rents or store closures. Up to five underperforming Thomas Sabo boutiques are on the chopping block.
The company said its wholesale business will remain unaffected as it is managed by Thomas Sabo Gmbh & Co KG in Germany.
Tony Björk, managing director for the UK and Scandinavia at Thomas Sabo, told Professional Jewellery: “Due to the tough conditions on the UK high street at present, including high business rates, the uncertainty of Brexit, and unsustainable lease agreements, which are not reflective of current consumer spending habits, we have had to make some difficult decisions over the last few years in order to support a sustainable, long-term business.
“This includes assessing the unprecedented growth of our online business which exists alongside a declining physical shopper, which has led us to, as a company, reflect on our store portfolio to ensure that we are both serving the needs of our customers in 2019 and setting a strong foundation for the continued development of the Thomas Sabo brand in UK.
“Therefore we have this week launched a Company Voluntary Arrangement. The majority of our store portfolio is unaffected but, if approved, the CVA will likely lead to the closure of five stores.”
Thomas Sabo has 22 stores in the UK and three concessions in John Lewis.
In more CVA news, Topshop owner Arcadia is looking to close about 50 stores including the Miss Selfridge flagship on Oxford Street, Boots has earmarked 200 UK shops for closure and Debenhams is moving forward with plans to shut 22 locations in 2020.
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