Burberry’s chairman said the plans for a new £50m manufacturing facility in Leeds have been put on hold as the luxury brand assesses the impact of the Brexit vote, it has been reported.
Bloomberg and the Guardian reported from the company’s annual general meeting this morning that Sir John Peace said the plans would still go ahead but the timing depended on how events unfold.
“We’ve certainly put it on hold for the moment, but that might be for a very short period of time. It’s not in terms of reversing our decision to do it or not. But it’s the speed at which we invest,” reported Bloomberg.
However, Burberry later emailed a statement that said: “The result of the EU referendum is being taken into account but our plans for a new manufacturing and weaving facility in Yorkshire remain on track.”
The new factory, announced in November last year, is set to replace two facilities in Castleford, West Yorkshire, and Cross Hills, North Yorkshire. All 800 employees were expected to move to the new plant. Work is due to begin this year and will be completed by 2019.
It comes as Burberry revealed yesterday like-for-like retail sales fell by 3% year on year in the three months to June 30, and warned that the “external environment remains challenging”.
Total retail revenue remained flat at £423m.
Earlier this week, Burberry announced it had appointed former Céline chairman and CEO Marco Gobbetti as its new chief executive. Incumbent CEO Christopher Bailey will become president and chief creative officer.
- Update: The piece was updated with Burberry’s statement.