Frasers shuts more Jack Wills stores including Soho site
today Jan 17, 2020
The gradual retreat of retailers from physical spaces is continuing with the latest slate of store closures coming from Jack Wills, which is now owned by Frasers Group. One central London store is on the closure list.
The company will close six shops on the back of a failure to negotiate rent deals that Frasers feels are appropriate for the apocalyptic conditions on the UK high street at present.
Management will try to find alternative posts for the affected staff at the stores in London’s Soho, Bournemouth, Camberley, Cheltenham, Truro and Witney.
The retailer was bought by the group that was formerly known as Sports Direct International in a pre-pack administration deal last August. It paid £12.5 million for the struggling business.
Back then, Jack Wills had 98 stores. But while, as with its House of Fraser buy, the company had said it wanted to maintain as many stores as possible and only closed eight at first, it has shut more and has complained that not all landlords “have been as helpful as others”.
But it’s not just rents that are the issue. Frasers is one of the big names that this week has been calling for the government to urgently look at the business rates system and the issue of transitional relief as it says many struggling stores are paying higher rates than they should be.
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