Another iconic Aussie store has fallen through the cracks with menswear store Ed Harry forced into administration following a shocking Christmas period.
The store, which has provided formal and casual clothing for Australians for over two decades, was handed over to KPMG administrators on Tuesday after struggling to make it through the holiday season.
According to Managing Director David Clark, Ed Harry has faced may challenges over the past year that the store sadly has not been able to overcome. He claimed the competition has become all to much for the business that was first established in 1993, as online shopping continues to grow.
“While this was to be expected, the directors had been exploring options for funding to enable Ed Harry to continue to compete and grow, however, to this point have been unsuccessful,” he said in a statement this week.
“Today is a difficult day for all our hard-working employees and loyal customers.”
Although the business has managed to establish 87 stores across Australia with a total staff of 498, KPMG partner Brendan Richards said unfortunately, maintaining a strong customer base remains a challenge.
“Like many other Australian retailers, after a strong period of growth, it has faced a challenging environment over the past 12 months – and a particularly tough Christmas sales period,” he explained in a statement. “It has also become clear that shopping centre footfall has been significantly weaker than expected.”
However, Ed Harry will not close it’s doors just yet with normal trading set to continue while administrators undertake immediate assessment of business. In the mean time, a clearance sale of existing merchandise will begin, giving shoppers the opportunity to grab any of their much-loved items before the store closes for the final time.
The latest announcement follows the closure of fellow menswear retailer Roger David late last year. Administrators broke the news in November claiming while the brand is strong, the business did not pass the viability test.
“Roger David was a victim of rising fixed costs, fierce competition from online and global competitors and cautious consumer demand,” administrator Craig Shephard said at the time.
The brands have followed in the footsteps of many other clothing chains across Australia, which are struggling or are now out of business, including Topshop, Marcs, David Lawrence, Payless Shoes, Pumpkin Patch, Herringbone, Rhodes & Beckett, Maggie T and Oroton.
Iconic fashion brand Esprit also ceased trading in Australia and New Zealand earlier this year when all 67 of the chain’s remaining stores were shut down due to poor performance compared to its other stores around the globe, particularly in Asia.