The comeback of Laura Ashley in the fashion sector has begun as Batsheva Hay’s eponymous Batsheva label has linked up with the UK brand in a way makes the most of its heritage and targets the upscale shopper.
French Connection said on Tuesday it was mulling a sale and sought potential suitors as Spotlight Brands and Gordon Brothers backed out from making an offer to buy the struggling British fashion retailer.
The sale of four Arcadia brands to ASOS on Monday was no surprise. But what was a surprise was that no mention whatsoever was made of the future of store jobs at the Topshop, Topman, Miss Selfridge and HIIT businesses.
The Laura Ashley banner is set to return to the UK high street next year in a surprise new partnership with Next. But before its fashion followers raise a cheer, the deal doesn’t include the brand’s clothing.
The circumstances surrounding the collapse of Laura Ashley in March will be under even closer scrutiny with the appointment of a second administrator to look at the financial situation of the company before its failure.
Warnings that the UK retail environment will remain challenging during the rest of the year may deter many large chains from investing in bricks-and-mortar but Poundland is planning to open six new Pep&Co shop-in-shops.