Menu
 
Home | News | Day of reckoning
 
News | 22nd October 2020
 

Day of reckoning

EWM chain’s future is in doubt if group’s owner saves Peacocks

 
 
Edinburgh Woollen Mill chief executive Philip Day, who lives at Hayton, near Carlisle. S210135.jpg
 

THE Edinburgh Woollen Mill chain may be liquidated if a buyer is not found.

Owner Philip Day is working to save value fashion retailer Peacocks and jettison the rest of the group, according to reports in trade publications this week.

EWM Group, which has Peacocks, Jaeger, Austin Reed and Ponden Home, filed notice of its intention to appoint administrators earlier this month. This is due to expire today.

The deal means Peacocks would be acquired out of administration, with its worst-performing stores axed, led by EWM’s chief, Steve Simpson, and backed by Day.

Peacocks has about 400 stores and would be run alongside Bonmarché, the struggling womenswear retailer fashion chain which Day bought this year and sits outside the EWM group.

The group employs about 24,000 people and traded from more than 1,100 outlets before the COVID-19 pandemic.

The deal is contingent on Day securing a capital injection from a US hedge fund, which would take a minority stake.

If a deal can’t be struck by today, EWM will call for a 10-day extension at the High Court.

The proposed deal would not include the Edinburgh Woollen Mill chain, which could be liquidated unless a buyer is found, according to Retail Gazette.

Last week EWM Group shut 50 stores, putting 600 people out of work.

Landlords criticised the administration proposals outlined by representatives.

In a letter EWM said administrators were reviewing its lease portfolio with a view to determining which stores, if any, may be “retained and/or potentially transferred by the company”.

The company later warned landlords that another 100 to 150 stores would shut imminently.

On stores, which will survive, Day has appointed property agents to hammer out new leases at vastly reduced rents.

Ratcliffes Chartered Surveyors, which manages four retail properties leased to the EWM Group, said its clients were surprised by the decision of a company which reported pre-tax profits for the year to November 2019 of £23.4m and for the half year to March 2020 of £14.7m”.

Ratcliffes’ landlord clients rejected EWM’s proposals for the stores in question.

In a letter to EWM, it said: “My clients consider that, if your hitherto very successful company is to be saved, with its stores and employees retained, the person best placed and most responsible to do that is its non-resident billionaire owner, Philip Day, by repatriating some of his tax-sheltered profits.”

Estates Gazette reported that Mr Simpson sought confirmation from landlords that they would not claim for lease liabilities during the administration process in a rent-free period, which would end only 28 days after a termination notice from the property owner if it chose to send one.

The alternative was to forfeit or surrender the lease, resulting in redundancies at each property in question.

“There is an unprecedented unanimity of views from landlords to reject EWM’s proposals,” said one landlord, who did not wish to be named.

An EWM Group spokesperson said: “Throughout this extremely tough time we have worked to be fair to our staff and all our partners, including landlords.

“The pandemic and the lockdown have forced all retailers to make difficult decisions and EWM Group is no exception.

“Our priority remains securing the survival of our businesses and saving as many jobs as possible.”

 
 
Would you like to support us?

The Eskdale and Liddesdale Advertiser is our community owned local newspaper and even in today’s troubled times, we aim to bring you local news and articles in an impartial, responsible and factual way.

We hope you have enjoyed reading this free article but we need your support so we can keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent and keeps you up to date with what is happening in Eskdale and Liddesdale.

Every reader’s contribution, however big or small, is so valuable to us.
 
 
‘Owned by the Community...Published for the Community’
Do you have a story?

Please get in touch if you have a story or article you would like to see published.

Related Articles

Local MP and councillors react to MP Sir David Amess death

MPs and councillors will continue to engage with constituents

 

Organisations benefit from Recovery Fund

RECOVERY funding has been secured for six organisations in Langholm.…

 

Marathon adventure

Eskdalemuir man runs for special charity

 

Borderlands bid rejected

City of Culture not coming our way

 

Brexit given as reason for demise of LEADER

Langholm received around £260,000 in funding from the project

 

SURF award shortlist for Old Police Station

Langholm affordable accommodation project up for prestigious award

 

Walk on the wild side

THE Langholm Initiative will celebrate Community Land Week Scotland with…

 

Up for auction again

‘Standout’ property needs extensive repairs and renovation

 

Copshaw Holm on film

A SHORT film has been created showcasing the payoff from…

 

A Modelling career awaits Langholm teen

Sam Cook signs up with London agency and hits the…

 

Frustration over X95

UNHAPPY locals are calling on Borders Buses to increase the…

 

A stitch in time

400 years marked with wonderful tapestry

 

Over 50’s boosters and jabs for 12-15 year olds

D & G team are readying the plans to roll out the…

 

Local sorting office threatened with closure

Royal Mail property review leaves Langholm in limbo

 

Chilli festival coming to Langholm

Self-confessed chilli capital of Scotland to host first ever ChilliFest

 

Public consultation on flood proposals promised

Councillor says ‘Ditch the Drain’ campaigners are being heard

 

Resurfacing works to result in A7 road closures

A7 road BEAR Scotland

The A7 will be closed between Canonbie and Hawick between…

 

Call for unvaccinated to come forward for jabs

Covid passports to be introduced in Scotland for those aged…

 

Talk to the Tarras team

Drop in every Wednesday for a chat

 

Muckle Toon Media welcomes new chairman

An optimistic John Hammond picks up the reins of the…

 

Over 100 residents attend heated flood defence meeting

Calls for renewed consultation with both regional and community councils

 

Kat joins Tarras team

Kat Mayer takes up her role as project and education…

 

Recycling Centre on the cards for Langholm

92% want to have the opportunity to dispose of garden…

 

National labour crisis felt by local businesses

Shortage of 100,000 drivers impacts on deliveries across the UK

 

FTS management duo gain prestigious degree

TWO local dyers have become the first to graduate from…

 

Canonbie Surgery relocates for major building repairs

EMERGENCY building repairs will be undertaken at Canonbie Surgery following…

 

Scaffolding fixed but what happens next?

Council forced to carry out repairs before something dreadful happens

 

Memorial centenary

THE 100th anniversary of the Langholm war memorial in Buccleuch…

 

Cleaning at the Kirk

Great team effort is appreciated

 

The Passion Remains

ONCE again, a much-reduced version of Langholm Common Riding was…

 

School transfer news

Langholm Alliance to consult on use of former primary building

 

Langholm Town Centre Building in danger of collapse

Fears that falling scaffolding and masonry may kill or injure

 

Our dream jobs

Two new managers appointed at reserve

 

Town's revival starts to come to fruition

Langholm Alliance has contributed £15,000 to boost activities

 

Engineering a future

Academy pupils awarded Industrial Cadet certificates

 

Rachel hands over the reins to Danielle

E&L Advertiser’s new community editor takes up her new post

 

Full steam ahead for ambitious enterprise

Planners give green light to the conversion of former BFA…

 

Langholm People

OutPost Arts sets portrait challenge

 

Community purchase of school on Knife-edge

THE future of Langholm’s former primary school as a vital…

 

War Memorial improvements

LANGHOLM Social Club is pleased to announce that, after much…

 
 
requires mailchimp logins and wired up to a list
Join our mailing list
Keep up to date with all that’s going on at the E&L
This site uses cookies.
Configure
 
Read our privacy policy

This site uses cookies for marketing, personalisation, and analysis purposes. You can opt out of this at any time or view our full privacy policy for more information.