A story of our times: retailer Boohoo acquires Debenhams brand and intellectual property rights in £55m deal (but not the stock, shops, staff or invoices from unpaid suppliers)

A story of our times: retailer Boohoo acquires Debenhams brand and intellectual property rights in £55m deal (but not the stock, shops, staff or invoices from unpaid suppliers)

The bastion of the High Street that was the Debenhams department store is about to disappear for good although its name will live on as an online retailer. Ian Carrotte of ICSM Credit is summed up the trend of the 2020 Covid Crisis in retail.

He said: “Bricks and mortar retailers are disappearing as shoppers denied the freedom to browse in the stores are forced into clicking on a mouse at a picture of something that may or may not be what they want. It was changing before Covid as for many reasons online shopping was booming – in part due to its convenience but I don’t believe it is the end of the high street as a place to buy. People like shopping is part of the human condition that’s been around since shops were invented by the Romans and Greeks thousands of years ago.”

Mixed fortunes

BooHoo were put under pressure last year when ICSM Credit and a swathe of investigators revealed they were paying many of their supply workers less than the minimum wage. They launched a so-called investigation which at first was a PR exercise but was later revealed to be a sham. Since then they have tried to get their house in order while their low cost fashion items continued to sell well boosting their revenue while rivals saw sales fall. Hence they felt in a strong position to bid for the Debenhams brand.

Steel workers protest over job losses in 1980 - now even more jobs are going in retail

Job losses

Ian Carrotte said thousands of suppliers had been taken to the cleaners over collapsing retailers as one after another they fell into administration. He said: “I’m not singling out Debenhams as there are a long list of chains and stores that have left printers, sign-makers, hauliers, shop fitters and many others unpaid. And there’s the small matter of 175,000 jobs in retail that went in 2020 along with more in the supply chain. You have to go back to the end of the steel and coal industries or the closure of the railways under Beeching for similar job losses – and that is a cost to the economy which takes years to put right.”

About ICSM Credit

ICSM Credit has more than four decades of experience as a credit intelligence group whose members gain inside information about firms in trouble allowing them to avoid bad debts and rogue traders. To join costs less than a tank of fuel - while at the moment there's a special free temporary membership offer during the Covid-19 crisis which gives access to free legal letters. ICSM also has an effective debt collecting service which has a global reach - ask for details from Paul.

For details about ICSM Credit call 0844 854 1850 or visit the website www.icsmcredit.com or email Ian at Ian.carrotte@icsmcredit.com on how to subscribe and to join the UK’s credit intelligence network to avoid bad debts and late payers. Follow ICSM Credit on FaceBook, Twitter and YouTube and Ian Carrotte on LinkedIn.

To keep up to date subscribe to the FREE ICSM Credit Newsletter to hear all the latest insolvency news and to see who has gone out of business click on the orange panel on the top left of the home page of the website www.icsmcredit.com or send an email to Ian.carrotte@icsmcredit.com

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