BHS.com in shock UK closure plan
In a surprise move, the reborn BHS website is being closed down, despite reports of soaring sales at the business. The BHS brand is owned by the Qatar-based Al Mana Group that said on Thursday it is now to focus resources on its franchised store business, BHS International.
The website will close on June 27 with final deliveries to customers happening on July 5.
The company confirmed the move in a statement and also said that the 18 employees and the business’s suppliers will be treated “fairly and equitably as the website is closed down.”
It also confirmed that it’s still committed to “expanding and investing” in the BHS International operation and is currently in advanced talks with a number of new partners. The overseas franchise business operates profitable department stores in Europe and the Middle East.
The UK website move has come as a surprise to many simply because the new owners, who took control of the BHS brand after its predecessor retail chain went under in summer 2016, have been extremely bullish about its prospects.
Not long ago, the website reported a sales rise of over 40% and launched its first marketing campaign with posters carrying the words “We’re Back”.
The website originally launched just under two years ago selling a more limited range of products than is available at present with categories like clothing added later.
It's a sorry end for the BHS brand in Britain, which has had a presence in stores or online for almost a century. And while it comes at a time when conditions are extremely tough for UK retail, online businesses are seen as being more robust and more likely to stay the course than their peers based in physical stores.
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