KPMG oversees Lingerie Outlet Store administration

25 October 2019 Consultancy.uk

Joint administrators from KPMG’s restructuring sector have sold the majority of ecommerce firm Lingerie Outlet Store, safeguarding 26 jobs in Wiltshire. KPMG was installed as administrator after a number of challenges put pressure on the lingerie company’s sales figures in 2019.

The UK high street looks set to end the decade on a low note, as new research has revealed retailers are seeing their highest level of store closures in nine years. Averaging 16 closures per day, the UK saw a net loss of over 100 more stores than in the same period of 2018 alone, with worse expected to come for the sector as Brexit looms on the horizon. Fashion retail is one of the most prominent victims of the continuing high street slump. The first half of 2019 saw the number of fashion stores in the UK tumble by a net decline of 118, despite registering the largest number of openings of any sector.

It’s not just the bricks-and-mortar stores of the UK which have taken a beating in recent times, however. Recent months have seen e-commerce firms discover that they are far from immune to the same pressures that have led to a high street crunch in the UK. This summer, sales saw a positive bounce, but due to declining consumer confidence resulting from stagnant wages and the rising cost of living, online stores had to discount heavily to offset the impact of this, the sustainability of which remains to be seen in the long-term.

KPMG oversees Lingerie Outlet Store administration

Founded in 2011, Lingerie Outlet Store was launched as a specialist online retailer of lingerie, swimwear and active wear, trading via eBay, Amazon and its own website across the UK and internationally, with a strong presence in the US and Germany. Despite initially seeming well-positioned to take business away from traditional brands, however, the Wiltshire-based firm fell into administration earlier this year. Chris Pole and Mark Orton from KPMG’s restructuring practice were appointed as joint administrators to oversee the process at the start of the autumn.

Tim Bateson, who is a Director at KPMG, said, “The Lingerie Outlet Store was a British online retail success story, achieving consistent growth between 2011 and 2018, and winning the ‘Specialist e-Tailer of the Year’ award in 2017. However, the company experienced a number of challenges in 2019 which put significant pressure on the cash flow of the business and its ability to replenish stock and maintain sales.”

Fortunately for the 26 employees of the online-only company, Pole and Orton immediately sold the majority of the business and assets to L F Retail and Book Library, following their appointment. All staff have subsequently transferred to the purchasers, who will continue to trade the business from its base in Swindon.

Jas Singh, on behalf of the purchasers, said, “The Lingerie Outlet Store has a strong track record in the online retail space, so we’re delighted to be able to secure this deal. We look forward to working with the team to drive the business forward.”


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