Finance

Laura Ashley collapses into voluntary administration

Broede Carmody /

 

Home furnishings company Laura Ashley Australia has collapsed into voluntary administration.

External directors were called in to manage the business today, with Ross Blakeley, Quentin Olde and John Park from FTI Consulting appointed as administrators.

Laura Ashely was founded in Australia in 1971 and operates 38 stores in Australia and four in New Zealand under a licence agreement from Laura Ashely UK.

The appointment of administrators only applies to the retailer’s Australian stores.  

Laura Ashley’s New Zealand stores and Laura Ashley UK are not affected by the collapse of the Australian business. 

In a statement, John Park from FTI Consulting said it is the administrators’ intention for the business to continue to trade as normal while an “urgent assessment of the company’s financial position is conducted”. 

“While no immediate significant changes to the company’s trading operations are anticipated, it will be necessary for the administrators to assess performance and trading of individual stores,” Park said. 

The first creditors meeting will be held on or before 19 January.

The administrators will be calling for expressions of interest immediately. 

A spokesperson for FTI Consulting said it was too soon to determine what factors led to the administration. 

Laura Ashley Australia sells fashion, homewares and furniture. 

Laura Ashley was a Welsh fashion designer who first launched her furnishings business in the 1950s, before expanding into clothing. 

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Broede Carmody

Broede Carmody is a former senior reporter at SmartCompany. Previously, he was a co-editor of RMIT University's student magazine Catalyst.

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