More House Of Fraser Stores To Close In 2020
Sports Direct, the new owner of struggling fashion retailer House of Fraser, has announced that it will close more high street stores in 2020 after it deemed a number of unprofitable stores ‘unsustainable’ in the long term.
House Of Fraser Sale
House of Fraser, which was bought by Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley after it threatened to collapse into administration, putting thousands of jobs at risk, has been attempting to maintain its position on the British high street for the last twelve months.
But, despite slashing prices to entice more customers in and even allowing some stores to stop paying rent to keep themselves running, Mr Ashley suggested in a statement that it would be difficult to keep every single physical store open.
Sports Direct Excel
At the opposite end of the scale, Sports Direct has reported an increase in pre-tax half-year profits and saw their share price jump by 19% after the news was announced.
However, its investment in House of Fraser has appeared to cause more problems than benefits. The sports brand is now looking at moving away from the cheap activewear market and into a higher level of clothing retail and allow them to penetrate other competitive markets.
Shareholders have voted to rename the company the Fraser Group in a bid to transform the way consumers see Sports Direct and its subsidiaries.
Alongside House of Fraser, the team behind Sports Direct own a variety of other retailers across multiple markets, including Jack Wills, Game Digital and even the online furniture brand sofa.com.
In a statement made by Mr Ashley about increases in profit, the CEO laid out the potential problems he saw with House of Fraser and how his company could best solve them and ensure that jobs were safe and that only a handful of stores would have to close.
He suggested that it was ‘under-investment’ that had caused the brand’s struggle over the last twelve months and that if more focus and money went into the company, it would only go from strength to strength.
At the time of its collapse in 2018, House of Fraser employed around 16,000 staff across their head office and 59 stores. Seven of these have now closed.