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Arrogant Cat in rent negotiations

Young fashion business Arrogant Cat has drafted in consultants from BDO Stoy Hayward in a bid to move to turnover-linked rents on some of its standalone stores.

Arrogant Cat managing director Edmund Chan said he had sought the services of the accountancy firm, which is in negotiations with landlords over the lease agreements on Arrogant Cat stores in Leeds and Richmond upon Thames in Surrey.

The business, known for its flirty fashion and celebrity-endorsed styles, has five UK stores in total - the other three are in London - in addition to 100 wholesale accounts.

Chan said rents on some of the properties could be made more manageable for the business in the face of the downturn by switching to a turnover-linked structure. He added: “We are changing the format [of the UK business] slightly. A couple of leases will be converted to turnover rent only. The rents are too high. We have also been forced to cut down on wholesale accounts because the bank wouldn’t allow us to give them credit.”

Chan told Drapers that the company has been making good progress in overseas markets by opening stores in Hong Kong and the Middle East, but admitted he needed to make some adjustments to his domestic operation.

Arrogant Cat is in negotiation for a sixth UK store on the King’s Road in Fulham, west London, and recently signed a franchisee in Cyprus. It opened its first store in 2001.

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