Boux Avenue in urgent rent talks as sales fall
today Jan 17, 2020
Boux Avenue has become the latest high-profile retail name to be talking to its landlords over possible rent cuts with reports that it’s in ‘urgent’ talks in the most challenging retail environment ever seen.
The firm is controlled by entrepreneur and Dragons’ Den TV star Theo Paphitis who also owns the larger Ryman stationery and Robert Dyas household goods chains.
Paphitis has said he’s personally leading a major review of the Boux Avenue business that includes talking to landlords about rent cuts at its 30 stores as well as the label’s "appropriate mix of channels”.
The company hasn’t commented on whether store closures are also an option that he’s looking at.
It has revealed weak figures for its 2018/19 trading year but didn’t break out figures for Boux separately. And it also said it saw a tough Christmas period at Boux, which acted as a drag compared to the more buoyant Ryman and Robert Dyas operations. The company said that recent months saw double-digit drops at the lingerie business and that weakness led to an overall group sales decline of 1.3% in the six weeks to December 24.
In the current weak environment for the lingerie chain, it’s clear that what the entrepreneur has called “significantly above average” rent bills would be on his hit list given the fact that many retail peers have been able to push through rent cuts via company voluntary arrangement (CVA) deals.
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