Payless Shoes collapses into voluntary administration

Eloise Keating /

Shoe retail chain Payless Shoes has collapsed into voluntary administration but its stores are continuing to trade on a business as usual basis.

Payless Shoes was established in 1980 and survived a previous voluntary administration three years ago. However, the 131-store chain is once again in financial trouble.

Voluntary administrators from Ferrier Hodgson were appointed to Payless Shoes Pty Ltd on Tuesday, with Jim Sarantinos, James Stewart and Peter Gothard appointed to manage the administration process.

Sarantinos said in a statement on Tuesday the administrators are yet to determine the primary causes of the company’s current financial state, but immediately called for expressions of interest from potential buyers to purchase the company as a going concern.

Payless Shoes turns over approximately $75 million annually and employs 870 employees. Sarantinos confirmed all employees will continue to be paid by the administrators and all employee entitlements are expected to be paid in full.

The shoe retailer was previously placed in voluntary administration in late 2012 and was sold to US company Payless ShoeSource in early 2013. Prior to entering administration the company was operating 220 stores, however, this number was reduced to 150 as part of the restructure.

Eloise Keating

Eloise Keating is the editor of SmartCompany. Previously, Eloise was news editor at Books+Publishing, the trade press for the Australian book industry.