Barratts has closed a quarter of its stores with the loss of up to 200 jobs, as the future of the troubled footwear retailer remains in jeopardy.
The Leeds-based company, which fell into administration last month, closed 19 of its 75 stores. Stores affected include Hull, Manchester Arndale, Enfield, Norwich, Horsham, Maidstone, Gloucester, Uxbridge, Romford and Exeter. The closures have resulted in about 200 redundancies among its 1,000 staff so far. It is thought Barratts’ 23 concessions in department stores including Bhs and Debenhams are still open.
Industry experts told Drapers they do not believe Barratts, which is in administration for the third time in five years, will be saved. Barratts chief executive Michael Ziff ruled himself out of bidding for the business, but told Drapers he would be prepared to work with a new owner if required.
David Whitehouse and Philip Duffy of Duff & Phelps were appointed as joint administrators on November 8, with Barratts blaming “difficult trading conditions” for its troubles.
Footwear sources expect clothing retailers to pick up market share in the wake of Barratts’ closures.
One said: “The biggest benefactors will be the clothing retailers that sell footwear. Barratts is a mid-market, mixed-brand retailer so its customers are usually looking for a bargain. New Look, Topshop and even Primark could do well from it.”