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La Senza enters administration

Lingerie retailer La Senza has entered into administration for the second time in two years, appointing Pricewaterhouse Coopers today (July 1).

Robert Moran, Mike Jervis and Stuart Maddison at PwC have been appointed as joint administrators of La Senza’s trading company Marnixheath Limited.

The move, which also affects the frozen yoghurt Pinkberry brand, puts more than 750 jobs at risk across the business’ 55 La Senza stores and three Pinkberry outlets in the UK.

One source told Drapers the company had struggled to break even since it was acquired out of administration by Middle Eastern retail investor group AlShaya in 2012.

PwC cited “very difficult trading conditions” as the reason for the administration, which had come “despite sustained efforts to make the businesses more commercially viable”.

Robert Moran, joint administrator at PwC, said: “The challenging conditions in the UK high street are well documented. Like many other retailers, La Senza has been hit hard by the difficult economic environment and a slowdown in consumer spending.

“The administrators are continuing to trade the businesses as normal for the time being whilst discussions take place with interested parties in respect of a sale. We welcome any approaches to purchase all or part of the store portfolio.

“There are no immediate plans to close any stores and the administrators shall continue to assess the trading strategy over the coming days and weeks.

“Staff have been -and will continue to be paid for their work. The company and the administrators are making every effort to help staff at this difficult time.”

The North American operations of La Senza and throughout the rest of the world are unaffected.

Marnixheath, the trading company for La Senza UK, added: “Every effort has been made for two and a half years to transform and revitalise the La Senza UK business, but it has continued to experience difficult trading conditions, against the backdrop of a challenging economy and the changing dynamics of the UK retail market. We have, therefore, decided with regret that there is no alternative to administration.

“We will work closely with the administrators as they explore their options for the business and if they choose to close all or part of the business, every effort will be made to support staff in finding alternative opportunities for employment.”

The collapse comes after Jane Norman went into administration last week (June 23) affecting 24 stores and 157 jobs.

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