Denim fashion brand G-Star Raw has confirmed administrators have been unable to find a buyer for its Australian store estate, meaning all of its stores in the country have now been closed.
Justin Walsh, Sam Freeman and Stewart McCallum of Ernst & Young (EY) were appointed as voluntary administrators of G-Star Australia Pty Ltd on 15 May.
Despite an extensive marketing programme, EY said it was unable to identify a buyer for the company’s business. As a consequence, all of G-Star Australia’s stores have now been closed, resulting in approximately 200 job losses.
Local media reports claim G-Star operated 57 stores in the country.
“G-Star Raw is a globally recognised brand. The fact that no party was able buy the business reflects the high level on uncertainty regarding the future prospects for the Retail sector in Australia,” EY said in a statement.
G-Star, meanwhile, told just-style discussions with potential partners for parts of the current distribution are still ongoing.
“Like most in fashion retail, G-Star has been hit by Covid-19 as well, mainly in our physical stores,” a spokesperson said. “This crisis accelerated the transition to online, at the cost of the performance of physical stores.
“In response to these changes, we put in motion an overall restructuring plan. Australia was the first to be affected by this restructuring, caused by both the ongoing bushfires that already left the Australian retail market weakened and vulnerable, and then the implications of Covid-19. After filing for administration for our Australian business in May this year, we can now indeed confirm that the administrator has not found a suitable buyer for the whole estate.
“Moving forward, we will further build on our renewed organisation, focusing even more on online an strategic partners, specifically in Europe where we see great potential to re-strengthen our business after the impact caused by Covid-19.”
The Dutch clothing group announced a restructuring last month in a move set to affect 10% of its global workforce as the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic continues to weigh on the business.
The firm employs more than 2,000 people worldwide and at the time said 150 of the affected jobs are in the Netherlands where it has its headquarters. The news came after G-Star’s US unit filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection earlier in the month.
A number of brands and retailers have succumbed to bankruptcy and announced plans to close down operations after suffering under the weight of the pandemic, including Tailored Brands, Ascena Retail Group, J.Crew and off-price fashion retailer Stein Mart.