Another well-known Australian fashion chain has been hit by a deteriorating retail sector, with handbag and accessories chain Colette by Colette Hayman placed into voluntary administration leaving about 300 jobs and 140 stores at risk.
- The accessories chain was placed into voluntary administration on Friday leaving 300 jobs and 140 stores at risk
- The chain’s demise comes amid a series of retail collapses in recent months, including the end of Jeanswest and Bardot
- The administrators said they hope to be able to preserve as many jobs as possible
The accessories chain was placed into voluntary administration on Friday.
Founded in Australia in 2010, the chain operates across 140 stores in Australia and in New Zealand as a destination for bags, jewellery and accessories.
The business employs over 300 permanent staff, plus casuals, with annual gross sales of over $140 million.
The chain’s demise marks a series of retail collapses in recent months.
Discount department store Harris Scarfe also collapsed late last year.
Deloitte Restructuring Services partners Vaughan Strawbridge, Sam Marsden and Jason Tracy were appointed as Colette’s voluntary administrators.
“Colette By Colette Hayman has, unfortunately, been impacted by the current weak retail environment, as have many others,” Mr Strawbridge said.
Creditors to meet next week
Mr Strawbridge said the first meeting of creditors will be held on February 12.
“Our focus is on continuing to trade the business while we seek either a recapitalisation of the group, or a sale of the business,” he said.
“Given the strength of the brand we are confident we will be able to secure a future for the business and preserve the employment of as many people as possible.”
Mr Strawbridge said that as trading continues, employees will continue to be paid by the administrators.
He said he was also confident there are sufficient assets to meet all employees’ entitlements.
The administrators will continue to honour gift cards.
Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures show a 0.9 per cent rise in retail turnover in November, a stronger-than-expected increase.
But economists had suggested that December’s figures, due later this week, will need to be seen to determine whether there has been an overall improvement in spending.
Industry analysts are predicting tougher months ahead.
IBISWorld predicts consumer sentiment will fall by 4.6 per cent in 2019-20, while household discretionary income will decline by 0.7 per cent.