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Alexon at risk in John Lewis

The future of Alexon Group’s John Lewis concessions hangs in the balance after the department store served notice on 24 of the classic womenswear company’s concessions.

John Lewis has served notice on 17 Kaliko concessions and a further seven concessions that operate under the Minuet Petite and Alexon names.

Alexon chief executive Jane McNally conceded the concessions were under notice, but added that she was in dialogue with the department store and that she did not expect all 24 concessions to be terminated. “It would be wrong to say we won’t be represented in any John Lewis outlets for autumn 10.”

Last week, Alexon - which owns the Ann Harvey, Dash, Kaliko, Minuet Petite, Alexon and Eastex chains - issued plans for a share placing to raise £20.3m in capital to accelerate its turnaround plan, which involves exiting or renegotiating 63 onerous leases and opening new stores.

Alexon will open 25 shops and 50 concessions this year with partners such as House of Fraser, Debenhams and independent department stores, and ramp up its online offer.

It will expand its Ann Harvey fascia, as well as dual-branded Eastex and Dash, and Kaliko and Minuet Petite stores after a successful trial.

McNally said “no more than nine” standalones would close this year.

Alexon also wants to increase its online business’s share of turnover from 2% to 8% within three years.

Alexon has 101 stores and 892 concessions in the UK.

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