STRUGGLING menswear retailer Ed Harry has been placed in voluntary administration with an immediate clearance sale of merchandise coming into effect as creditors assess the business.
There are 19 Ed Harry stores in Western Australia, 13 of them in the metro area.
On Tuesday, KPMG’s Brendan Richards and Gayle Dickerson were appointed voluntary administrators after a “particularly tough” Christmas sales period for the chain, and mounting pressure from decreased shopping centre footfall.
The news follows the closure of a string of Australian retailers recent times, including Marcs, Pumpkin Patch, Payless Shoes and Roger David, while department store Myer has also struggled.
Ed Harry managing director David Clark said the business had been facing fierce retail competition for some time.
“While this was to be expected, the directors had been exploring options for funding to enable Ed Harry to continue to compete and grow, however to this point have been unsuccessful,” he said.
Established in 1993, and relaunched in 2011, Ed Harry operates 87 stores across all Australian mainland states and territories and employs 498 staff.
In the short-term, the South Australia-based business will immediately embark on a clearance sale of existing merchandise to maximise options for the business.
KPMG said Ed Harry gift cards will be honoured for one month on a dollar-for-dollar basis only.
“Like many other Australian retailers, after a strong period of growth, it has faced a challenging environment over the past 12 months – and a particularly tough Christmas sales period,” KPMG’s Brendan Richards said.
“It has also become clear that shopping centre footfall has been significantly weaker than expected.”
The first meeting of creditors of the company will be held in Adelaide on Thursday, January 24.