Arcadia retail empire collapses, with tens of thousands of jobs at risk during run up to Christmas

More than 10,000 jobs are at risk after Arcadia retail group, which owns Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, Burton and more, fell...

More than 10,000 jobs are at risk after Arcadia retail group, which owns Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, Burton and more, fell into administration overnight. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire - Credit: PA

More than 10,000 jobs are said to be at risk as brands such as Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, Burton face an uncertain future as the Arcadia retail group collapsed overnight.

The Arcadia group, which runs more than 440 stores in the UK, went into administration last night, putting 13,000 jobs at risk.

Topshop stores in St Albans and Stevenage, Dorothy Perkins outlets in Stevenage, Letchworth, Welwyn Garden City and Burton units in Stevenage and Welwyn Garden City now face an uncertain future.

There is no news on redundancies at this stage, and more than 9,000 staff at the retailers are currently on furlough.

In a statement, the chief executive of Arcadia, Ian Grabiner, said: “This is an incredibly sad day for all of our colleagues as well as our suppliers and many other stakeholders.

“The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the forced closure of our stores for prolonged periods, has severely impacted on trading across all of our brands.

“Throughout this immensely challenging time, our priority has been to protect jobs and preserve the financial stability of the group in the hope that we could ride out the pandemic and come out fighting on the other side.

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“Ultimately, however, in the face of the most difficult trading conditions we have ever experienced, the obstacles we encountered were far too severe.”

Tweeting last night, the secretary of state for business, Alok Sharma MP, described the collapse as “incredibly sad news”.

He added: “I know this will be a worrying time for employees and their families, especially in the run up to Christmas. The Government stands ready to support those affected during this difficult period.”

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