UK-based start-up Sook, which provided flexible store pop-up retail spaces, has ceased trading after failing to secure further investment.
In a LinkedIn post, founder John Hoyle, said: “I’m devastated to announce the closure of Sook.
“In spite of the extraordinary efforts of our team, growing sales and achieving international scale we were unable to raise sufficient investment to continue in the current environment.
“I’m so proud of all that we achieved and incredibly sad that we cannot continue. Please support our team members as they search for new roles.
“They have first hand experience of disrupting the retail and real estate sectors during incredibly challenging times. Thank-you to everyone who supported us over the last five years.”
One of the slides featured in the post stressed how proud the Sook team were in “helping High Streets of all sizes to flourish and grow”.
Sook operated five locations in London, a site in the Bluewater shopping centre Kent, Trinity Leeds, Metrocentre Newcastle, Liverpool ONE, Bullring Birmingham, St James’s Quarter Edinburgh and Westquay Southampton. It also operated one space in Johannesburg, South Africa.
In August 2023, Hoyle told InternetRetailing that “despite the current challenges facing high streets, there is a strong sense of hope and optimism for the future”.
“Positive developments are occurring across the retail landscape,” he said at the time.
In the run up to Christmas, Sook had partnered with circular fashion platform Depop in a bid to encourage sales of pre-loved clothing while reviving UK high streets. There had been hopes that the partnership would run for six months and expand across the UK.
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