Almost 5,000 jobs are tonight at risk with the news that Peacocks and Jaeger have gone into administration.
Today’s news comes soon after owner the Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group appointed administrators to its Edinburgh Woollen Mill and Ponden Home businesses, with the loss of 860 jobs and putting more than 2,800 more at risk. Jaeger and Peacocks were given a two-week lifeline by the High Court for a buyer to be found. Today news came that the lifeline had expired without a buyer being found.
Edinburgh Woollen Mill and Ponden Home had struggled as the Covid-19 pandemic kept the older shoppers and international tourists who shopped with them at home. But it was hoped that the prospects were better for Peacocks and Jaeger, with their customers more likely to buy online.
Although Tony Wright and Alistair Massey of FRP Advisory have now been appointed as administrators, no shops have shut at this point, and no redundancies have been made.
Cardiff-based Peacocks runs 432 shops with 4,369 members of staff, while Jaeger, based in London, operates 76 shops and concessions and has 347 employees.
Tony Wright, joint administrator and fartner at FRP, said: “Jaeger and Peacocks are attractive brands that have suffered the well-known challenges that many retailers face at present. We are in advanced discussions with a number of parties and working hard to secure a future for both businesses.”
The two administrators continue to look for buyers for Edinburgh Woollen Mill and Ponden Home as well as for Jaeger and Peacocks.
EWM Group and its subsidiaries are owned by Philip Day and his family and until recently employed about 24,000 people. Bonmarché, also owned by the Day family, is a separate entity and not affected by this administration.
Commenting, a spokesperson for the EWM Group said: “In recent weeks we have had constructive discussions with a number of potential buyers for Peacocks and Jaeger Ltd but the continuing deterioration of the retail sector due to the impact of the pandemic and second lockdown have made this process longer and more complex than we would have hoped.
“While those talks are ongoing, we no longer have an option to extend the standstill agreement originally imposed by the High Court six weeks ago any further. Therefore as directors we taken the desperately difficult decision to place Peacocks and Jaeger into administration while those talks continue. We will continue to do all we can to support FRP Advisory in trying to secure the best outcome possible for these businesses.”