Accrington-based retail chain – Bensons for Beds – has secured as part a pre-pack administration deal, that will save 1,899 jobs across the UK.
However, at the same time, furniture chain Harveys has fallen into administration, meaning the immediate loss of 240 jobs. 1,300 Harveys staff have been retained while the business continues to trade in the hope of securing a buyer in the coming weeks.
Alteri Investors, a specialist backer of struggling retailers, owns both businesses – however, they will be seeking a buyer for Harveys moving forward.
It was announced on Tuesday that global professional services firm, PwC, has been appointed as administrator to the two businesses, which Alteri acquired last year.
Zelf Hussain, PwC’s joint administrator, said: “The group had been facing increasingly challenging trading conditions in recent months, in particular the Harveys furniture business. This has resulted in cash flow pressures, exacerbated by the effects of coronavirus on the supply chain and customer sales. It has not been possible to secure further investment to continue to trade the group in its current form.
“Following our appointment, we immediately completed a sales process for certain business and assets of the group. This sale puts the ongoing business on a firmer financial footing in its restructured form as Bensons for Beds only model, whilst preserving 1,899 jobs. The purchasers will be working with the existing management team to continue to grow and develop the business.”
Hussain added: “The Harveys furniture related retail and manufacturing businesses will continue to trade in administration whilst all options are explored – 1,330 employees have been retained to support this trading period. It was regrettably necessary to make 240 employees redundant due to the economic position of the group.
“We will make every effort to help those affected at this difficult time by liaising with the Redundancy Payments Service and Job Centre Plus.”