Philip Green's Arcadia UK fashion group falls into administration

Pedestrians walk past a Topshop store, owed by Arcadia group on Oxford street in London, Britain, November 30, 2020. REUTERS/Simon Dawson

LONDON (Reuters) – British tycoon Philip Green’s Arcadia fashion group has collapsed into administration, putting over 13,000 jobs at risk and becoming the country’s biggest corporate casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic so far, administrator Deloitte said on Monday.

Arcadia owns the Topshop, Topman, Dorothy Perkins, Wallis, Miss Selfridge, Evans, Burton and Outfit brands, trading from 444 leased sites in the UK and 22 overseas.

Deloitte said the stores will remain open, or reopen when permitted under the government’s COVID-19 restrictions, and no redundancies were being immediately announced.

“We will now work with the existing management team and broader stakeholders to assess all options available for the future of the group’s businesses,” said Matt Smith, joint administrator at Deloitte.

He said Deloitte would rapidly seek expressions of interest and expected to identify one or more buyers to ensure the future of the businesses.

“This is an incredibly sad day for all of our colleagues as well as our suppliers and our many other stakeholders,” said Arcadia CEO Ian Grabiner.

He blamed the pandemic for the group’s demise.

“In the face of the most difficult trading conditions we have ever experienced, the obstacles we encountered were far too severe,” he said.

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