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  • Landlord concerns over Blue Inc CVA

    Steve Sidkin's comment 14 March 2017 9:30 am

    The Blue Inc CVA is another example of how the insolvency process can place commercial landlords at huge disadvantage when their tenants run into financial trouble, and this is all the more apparent in fashion retail.

    Pre-pack administrations can rob landlords of their rights under the lease, remove their income and financial security, and even prevent them from recovering their property, despite non-payment of the rent.

    The chances are that this CVA will have been a 'fait accompli" with landlords - often a company's largest unsecured creditor - compelled to sign up to unattractive terms, if only to avoid having an empty property and a large business rates liability (thank you ;-) Mr Hammond).

    The highly publicised and drawn-out demise of BHS (to give just one example) is all too fresh in our memories, but here is yet another stark reminder for landlords in the fashion sector, that the law will step in to try and save an insolvent tenant from collapse but often to the severe detriment of its landlord.

    Tom Morton
    Real Estate Litigation
    Fox Williams LLP

  • Can the Modern Slavery Act solve fashion’s ethical crisis?

    Steve Sidkin's comment 16 February 2017 7:20 pm


    Whilst the Government is not currently willing to police the accuracy of the statements, there are activists who will take it upon themselves to investigate and then name and shame fashion retailers who produce inaccurate statements.

    The legislation, activist scrutiny, and the power of social media will in practice force larger retailers to raise their game to tackle human trafficking by producing accurate statements on which proper due diligence has been carried out. In this way the enforcement vacuum in the Act will be filled. Smaller retailers will be forced to follow suit.

    There will also be the trickle-down effect of the necessary due diligence. Proper due diligence will not be limited to the supply chain itself. Instead it is inevitable that proper due diligence will require every supplier to a fashion retailer (for example, shop cleaners and logistics providers) to conduct their own modern slavery enquiries.

    Parissa Torabi
    Associate
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LLP

  • Blue Inc property deals prolong administration

    Steve Sidkin's comment 25 January 2017 9:41 pm

    Spare a thought here for the landlords of insolvent fashion retailers, of whom the article makes no mention.

    They are often the company’s biggest unsecured creditor, yet most of their legal rights to protect their position under the lease are taken away by the tenant’s administration.

    Administrators now have to pay rent to landlords on a pro-rata basis whilst the tenant company trades (thanks to a recent –and welcome – Supreme Court judgment), but the landlord could be left with an empty space, and a hefty rates liability, at any time.

    Tom Morton
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LLP

  • Amazon and Forever 21 circle American Apparel

    Steve Sidkin's comment 5 January 2017 11:22 pm

    If Amazon proceeds and succeeds with offer it will certainly have the ability to make America[n Apparel] great again!

    Whilst there may be certain issues with such a trade mark, Amazon’s financial resource could impact American Apparel’s competitors in the US and elsewhere.

    Stephen Sidkin
    Chair
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LLP

  • UK model agencies found guilty of price-fixing

    Steve Sidkin's comment 19 December 2016 10:53 pm

    The claim by the modelling agencies the subject of the CMA’s decision that,

    “The Agencies did not collude with the aim of forcing up or fixing prices to the detriment of consumers, acting instead to protect the interests of models and also ensure a sustainable market which benefits customers, the economy and society.”

    is understandable. It is one of the few ways in which the fixing of prices may be lawful. But even so, it can be a difficult argument to sustain as it depends at least partly on there being no other way to achieving the same result of benefiting consumers.

    Irrespective of this, the question now is whether the CMA will use this decision to look further into the fashion industry in order to determine whether other infringements of competition law are occurring.

    Stephen Sidkin
    Fox Williams LLP

  • Theresa May to host London Fashion Week reception

    Steve Sidkin's comment 15 September 2016 8:12 pm

    Good to see new PM continue precedent established by last PM's wife. It would, however, be better if new PM ensured that account was taken of the needs of the UK fashion industry in the upcoming Brexit negotiations. Unless this is done receptions at No. 10 will count for little.
    Stephen Sidkin
    Chair
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LKP

  • Consumer confidence rebounds after post-Brexit slump

    Steve Sidkin's comment 31 August 2016 10:09 pm

    Consumer confidence rebound is to be welcomed. But for businesses not to be planning now for how their supply and other contracts will be affected when the Brexit phoney war comes to an end is to waste a significant opportunity.
    Stephen Sidkin
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LLP

  • Third of retailers to 'shake up' supply chains post-Brexit vote

    Steve Sidkin's comment 3 August 2016 11:37 pm

    A shake up may well be desirable. But how feasible?

    First there is the need to plan an exit from existing agreements in order not to damage the brand and avoid being in breach of contractual obligations.

    Second is the need not only to put new agreements in place, but also to ensure that the correct auditing and compliance checks can happen.

    So by all mean shake up, but take care.

    Stephen Sidkin
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LLP

  • Retailers and suppliers react to Turkey unrest

    Steve Sidkin's comment 19 July 2016 9:58 pm

    The attempted coup was an unwelcome development for many UK fashion businesses sourcing from Turkey. However, it emphasises the need to include in supply (as well as other) agreements a robust force majeure clause in order to ensure that the business does not find itself locked into a contract with a supplier which cannot deliver on time.

    Stephen Sidkin
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LLP

  • Drapers' verdict on the 2015 Christmas ads

    Steve Sidkin's comment 22 December 2015 6:51 pm

    Debenhams' "Found It" may be the least memorable ad. However, Found in Bath may have a different perspective given its owner's ownership of the FOUND trade mark registration.

    Stephen Sidkin
    Chair
    Fashion Law Group
    Fox Williams LLP

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