Fashion brand enters administration with 1,000 jobs at risk

PUBLISHED: 13:33 04 May 2018 | UPDATED: 17:55 04 May 2018

Fashion brand Jacques Vert has become the latest high street casualty after entering admnistration. Picture: Steve Adams

Fashion brand Jacques Vert has become the latest high street casualty after entering admnistration. Picture: Steve Adams

Copyright Archant Norfolk 2015

Up to 1,000 jobs are under threat after a high-street fashion brand with concessions across Norfolk and Suffolk called in administrators.

The 6,500-panel solar plant at Briar Chemicals in Norwich is being installed and maintained by RenEnergy. Picture: RenEnergy.The 6,500-panel solar plant at Briar Chemicals in Norwich is being installed and maintained by RenEnergy. Picture: RenEnergy.

Calvetron Brands, which trades as Jacques Vert, has appointed administrators from advisory firm Duff & Phelps as the high street continues to suffer amid challenging conditions.

READ: 1,000 jobs at risk at womenswear retailer

Jacques Vert’s East Anglian presence includes concessions in Palmers in Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft, Jarrold and House of Fraser in Norwich, and Debenhams in Ipswich and Colchester.

It comes less than a year after the business was bought out of administration by Calvetron after former owner Style Group Brands (SGB) ran into trouble.

The joint administrators, who will seek to keep the business running in the hope of finding a buyer, said inflation and a lack of wage growth had been behind a fall in fashion spending which had put the company into difficulties.

Philip Duffy, of Duff & Phelps, said: “Inflation and wage freezes have been major concerns for many fashion retailers and have been a driving force behind decreased spending. However, Calvetron Brands has also been carrying a number of legacy issues dating back to the acquisition of the assets and business of SGB resulting in a high cost base relative to its turnover.

“In the difficult retail environment we are facing today Calvetron Brands simply could not restructure its cost base quickly enough or create the necessary economies of scale to succeed.”

It comes on the back of news that department store House of Fraser is also planning to shed stores in a restructure following other such as New Look, Carpetright and Select in pursuing rent reduction agreements with landlords.

Calvetron chief executive Peter Ridler said: “Everyone at Calvetron Brands has worked with energy and determination to achieve the turnaround that was needed; however, a combination of four brands that needed time and investment, against a backdrop of extremely difficult trading conditions on the high street, rising costs and low customer confidence has meant that we haven’t been able to achieve this within the timescales required.”

The business was originally founded in 1972 by Jack Cynamon and Alan Green, two tailors from the East End of London. In 1977 they created a range of coordinated fashion, combined their names and added a French twist, creating the Jacques Vert brand.

The company expanded into a multi-branded fashion-retailing group in December 2002 with the acquisition of William Baird.

Jacques Vert merged with the Irisa group to become the Jacques Vert Group in 2012 and in June 2016 the company changed its name to SGB.

In June 2017 SGB went into administration and was sold via a pre-pack to Calvetron.

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