The new owner of British menswear brand TM Lewin is understood to have called in restructuring experts with a view to the initiation of a potential pre-pack administration.
The clothing retailer was acquired by Torque Brands last month, a special purpose acquisition vehicle set up by London-based consumer specialist, SCP Private Equity. It took over the reins from Bain Capital Credit, a leading global credit specialist, which acquired TM Lewin in 2015.
SCP has been pushing TM Lewin’s landlords to agree hefty rent cuts but is now said to be planning to operate the business principally as an online brand, putting hundreds of jobs at risk, according to The Sunday Times. It is working with restructuring firm ReSolve.
The move could see the bulk of TM Lewin’s 66 stores close. A spokesperson for the retailer, however, declined to comment on the reports.
Established in 1898, TM Lewin operates a global business with sales of more than GBP120m (US$148m) in FY20. The company’s online sales amounted to more than 30% of the group’s revenues last year.
TM Lewin could join a raft of high street names to have succumbed to the impact the Covid-19 pandemic is having on the entire retail industry. Earlier this month, the UK business of Victoria’s Secret fell into administration, while Quiz has appointed administrators to its wholly-owned subsidiary that operates the UK fashion brand’s 82 standalone stores in the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
Meanwhile, JD Sports Fashion Plc has filed a notice to appoint administrators to its specialist camping division Go Outdoors.