Concern is mounting over the fate of the UK arm of mainstream womenswear brand Basler after the German part of the business went into liquidation.
Basler UK has not been immediately affected, but Drapers understands it is expected to go into administration later this week.
Creditors decided to shut down the German operations of Basler Fashion Group – which includes Basler and sister brand St Emile – after the deadline passed to find a buyer for the company. It has been involved in insolvency proceedings since the end of May.
It is thought a sale fell through at the last minute after the buyer’s supervisory board decided against it.
Basler said it is still trying to find a solution and talks are ongoing with one prospective buyer.
The autumn 17 collections will be delivered, although the company has warned that there may be delays – and this could affect UK customers. It will not put spring 18 into production unless an investor is found.
The Basler brand has 125 wholesale stockists in the UK, as well as 16 concessions, three full-price own stores – on London’s Bond Street, in Chichester and in Epsom, Surrey – and one outlet in York.
“Autumn is still on track – the finance is confirmed, although delivery might be slightly delayed,” confirmed Martin Porter, head of retail for Basler in the UK and Ireland. He added: “We can’t make any assurances about spring 18 at this stage.”
Basler Fashion Group was founded in Berlin in 1936. Its headquarters are now in Goldbach.
It employs more than 1,100 people worldwide, and has 1,900 points of sales in more than 60 countries. It operates more than 40 shops and 80 shop-in-shops worldwide, as well as 13 outlets.
The group was acquired by German private equity firm Tempus Capital in June 2015. As part of the deal, London-based European retail investment fund Alteri Investors provided funds to Basler Fashion Group, which could not secure a loan through its normal banking facility.
Drapers understands the UK business was used as a guarantor for the entire company.
“The investors will look to recoup their money as quickly as possible,” said one source close to the situation.