What’s Next for Australian Fashion Labels?

Power Retail By Power Retail | 12 Jan 2021

Australian Fashion Labels is having ‘urgent’ talks with a potential buyer after filing for voluntary administration on 6th January.

Brands under the Group include Finders Keepers, Keepsake, The Fifth Label and C/MEO Collective.

The business has appointed administrators Brett Lord and Marcus Ayres from Duff & Phelps to complete the process.

“First and foremost, we’re trying to save the business, and the employees’ jobs and the outcome of that will be favourable to the creditor base,” Ayres told Smart Company. 

Australian Fashion Labels, which is based in Adelaide, has made restructuring plans to sell online as a pureplay business, but these costs may have contributed to the administration, Ayres explained.

In July 2020, Australian Fashion Labels’ e-commerce business, BNKR, made changes to its platform to accelerate a mobile-first focus. This would allow it better to handle multiple brands, multi-region operations and more products.

via Adelaide Review

Australian Fashion Labels founders, Melanie and Dean Flintoft | via Adelaide Review

“The legacy of those restructuring costs, plus the impact of COVID-19 on sales have become an increasing hang on the business,” he said.

Australian fashion Labels currently has more than 1,700 stockists and employs more than 100 people worldwide. Some brands such as Keepsake are sold on e-commerce platforms such as ASOS, and retailers, including MYER and Harrods.

“This next 48 hours is critical, we’re pretty clear what the position is. We’re trying to lock down all the key suppliers to allow us to continue to trade,” he told The Australian.

“That’s critical for the next month. There is a suitor in the wings. Based on the preliminary discussions that we believe the director had with this party it would seem like we should make our best endeavours to try and keep the business operational and pursue that proposal.”

The first creditors’ meeting will take place this Friday, 15th January.

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