More Monsoon Accessorize stores saved as landlords cut rents
At a time when good news is rare in the UK fashion retail sector, Monsoon Accessorize had some cheerful news this week as it could be retaining 57 more stores than expected. A larger number of landlords than predicted have agreed to base rent deals on turnover.
After it went into administration during the lockdown, the company had originally planned to reopen only 100 of its previous 230 shops. But it should now operate 157, which means that 2,400 jobs may have been saved, The Telegraph reported.
The stores are still, for now, under the control of administrator FRP Advisory after the brand itself — along with its HQ, design teams and distribution centre — was re-purchased by a vehicle controlled by its founder Peter Simon.
The shops will be open by the end of next month, FRP said.
Meanwhile Simon said that he was grateful to landlords for being helpful during a difficult process. “Monsoon and Accessorize will continue to have a strong presence on the high street,” he added.
Monsoon Accessorize has begun to reopen its stores with more than 30 now up and running. It’s unclear what impact the latest development will have on the Monsoon brand itself. Last week in a BBC radio interview, Simon had said that fewer than 10 Monsoon branches would open their doors with the brand to become a mainly online label. But of the 57 saved sites, perhaps some more could be Monsoon branches.
It looks like turnover-based rents could be the way forward for the UK retail sector, despite fixed rents with upwards-only reviews having previously been the norm in Britain.
A raft of stores from AllSaints to Frasers Group, TM Lewin, New Look, and more are in talks with their landlords about changes to the way they pay rent to reflect store takings.
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