Administrations

PwC appointed as administrators to Harveys

Furniture retailer Harveys has collapsed into administration after the retailer’s parent company, Blue Group, called in PwC to financially restructure the business.

Bensons for Beds, which is also owned by Blue Group, has been saved from the same fate after it was acquired by Blue Group owner Alteri Investors in a pre-pack deal, preserving almost 1,900 jobs. However, 50 of its stores will now shutter and almost 1,000 jobs remain at risk as a result of the acquisition.

PwC added that Harveys will continue to trade in administration whilst “options are explored”, and some 1,330 staff have been retained to support the retailer during this period. However, PwC said it was regrettably necessary to make 240 staff redundant due to “the economic position of the group”.

Mark Jackson CEO, Bensons for Beds Retail, said: “While this is a difficult day, saying goodbye to loyal colleagues across the group, the restructuring will allow Bensons for Beds to emerge as a leaner and fitter business, well positioned to rebuild in a new retail environment.

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“Bensons has a bright future. Our vertically-integrated British manufacturing base sets us apart in the market and we now have the foundation that will allow us to ensure Bensons can prosper.”

Gavin George, CEO of Alteri Investors, said: “Alteri remains fully committed to the future of Bensons and is providing £25m of fresh backing to help fund the turnaround of the business.

“The restructuring, whilst obviously difficult for Harveys’ employees, will safeguard more than half the group’s workforce and is a necessary milestone on Bensons’ journey to becoming a market-leading beds retailer with a strong omnichannel presence.”

He added: “We will continue to work closely with the management team on the turnaround of the business which we believe can have a bright future, despite the challenges facing the retail industry, including the long-term impact of the coronavirus pandemic.”

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