Administrators called in at Missguided, "high level of interest" from buyers
E-tailer Missguided has called in administrators — as expected — having failed to get a last-minute rescue deal. The move puts around 140 jobs at risk and comes after a winding up petition on the part of suppliers that are owed millions of pounds.
A trio from Teneo have been appointed as its joint administrators and there’s no news so far on the chance of a pre-pack rescue deal on the part of acquisition-hungry online peer Boohoo Group.
It's been reported that both JD Sports and ASOS had considered buying the brand but couldn't reach a deal, and it's unclear whether Boohoo — which is facing its own slowing growth — is still interested.
But it doesn't seem likely that the brand will disappear with Teneo saying: “The joint administrators will now seek to conclude a sale of the business and assets, for which there continues to be a high level of interest from a number of strategic buyers.”
Teneo said Missguided will continue to trade while a buyer of the business is sought.
The e-tailer has been under pressure for some time and it's no surprise that the final blow was delivered by suppliers given that some of them have been quoted in the press saying they haven't been paid for months. And last week, several were saying that their own businesses were at risk because of the situation with Missguided. Police were called when some turned up at the Missguided HQ in Manchester to try to get their money.
It's all a far cry from the glory days of the 13-year-old brand that rode the wave of the coverage it got on Love Island, as well as a TV series dedicated to it. It also undertook an ambitious expansion drive, opening flagship stores with large spaces taken at premium malls Westfield and Bluewater.
Although those stores were later closed and the company continued to face turbulent times, it did well during the pandemic as shoppers turned to online specialists when they couldn't go into physical stores. However, the post-pandemic period has been tough for it and turnaround specialist Alteri saved it from collapse last autumn when it bought a major stake.
Only last month, its founder Nitin Passi stepped down from the helm of the company as it sought a new buyer.
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