Karen Millen in administration in Australia, stores to close
today Sep 4, 2019
The Australian arm of Karen Millen, the UK-based fashion business that’s now owned by Boohoo Group, has been placed into administration. The move had been widely expected following the earlier administration filing for the British Parent company and for the Irish arm.
Karen Millen is a mid-priced label and has been available via major department stores Myer and David Jones in Australia as well as in its own stores. The company had struggled in the face of tough retail conditions in a number of international markets and also as department stores themselves saw declining customer footfall.
As of Wednesday, Richard Hughes, Tim Norman and Michael Billingsley, who are partners at Deloitte, were named as Joint and Several Administrators of the Australian business.
The new owner of the label is a pureplay online business and it appears to be fully focused on pursuing future growth via that channel. That has meant it's closing down all of the UK physical shops and the same strategy will be followed for Australia.
The chain isn't as big in Australia as in its home country with only seven standalone stores and eight concessions, but it still comes at a time when many other physical spaces have been closed in Australia and adds to the tally of retail job losses there. The company employs around 80 people in the country and turnover last year was around A$19 million.
Tim Norman said: “With the UK business now sold and the label withdrawing from Australia, we expect to wind down the business here and progressively close all stores in the coming weeks.”
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