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The demise of BHS on the High Street

Troubled department store British Home Stores (BHS) filed for administration

Billionaire Sir Philip Green purchased BHS for £200m in 2000 making it part of the Arcadia Group, but he sold it in 2015 for just £1!  The move to sell BHS for a one pound deal is said to be property led not retail led and the writing on the wall that the store group was in trouble.  Sale and Lease back agreements were put in place in an effort to keep the retailer in business and a sign that BHS had problems on the High Street with more and more shoppers buying online and a dwindling customer base. 

When was the last time you or your family shopped in BHS?

BHS in trouble

BBC Business News reported in April 2016 “New owners Retail Acquisitions, a consortium of financiers, lawyers and accountants, have failed to raise £160m in fresh capital to reverse losses”  READ MORE

BHS has echos of the demise of Woolworths

WOOLWORTHS
woolworths find out more

and HMV, Comet, Blockbuster Video and JJB Sports

BHS in administration

Sky News along with all major UK media sadly reported another High Street retailer in trouble stating on April 25th 2016 that “High street chain BHS has gone into administration, putting 11,000 jobs at risk and threatening the closure of up to 164 stores.” READ MORE

 

BHS Collapse was painfully inevitable

BHS has struggled for several years during the 2000s/2010’s with competition such as Primark chipping away at their customer base.

 

BHS purchaser Retail Acquisitions - a £1 deal to avoid paying out of pensions and getting out of lease Dilaps?

No doubt the behind the scenes moves of BHS's owners will be play out in the press - if you are a retailer with a commercial lease and have concerns read more on

dilaps help

 

Who are Retail Acquisitions?

Drapers Record, the fashion industry's business bible take a look at Retail Acquisitions READ MORE

BHS previous owner Sir Philip Green is branded the unacceptable face of capitalism

The British media covering the demise of BHS focus on Sir Philip Green as the "unacceptable face of capitalism" READ MORE and READ MORE and Sir Philip Green is also targeted through the media to pay at least "£300 million to plug a pensions black hole" READ MORE and "As High St icon's collapse threatens 11,000 jobs, fat cats accused of pocketing £425m from the business" READ MORE  The Daily Mail report "Can the man who milked the millions from BHS really be allowed to keep his knighthood" READ MORE

In response to these reports Sir Philip Green is reported to have "I think we have paid over the last five years some £300-400 million in taxes on profits that have been made on our companyREAD MORE 

Dominic Chappell, who bought BHS for £1 insists "no one is to blame for the collapse".

BHS Facts and Figures

BHS has 164 UK stores

BHS Flagship store is in Oxford Street, London

BHS in 2016 has a £571m pension deficit

BHS sold their Oxford Street Flagship store lease for £30m

British Home Stores first store opened in 1928 in Brixton

BhS in 1986 merged forming Storehouse Plc replacing British Home Stores name with BhS and later BHS

 

What will become of BHS?

BHS Flagship Oxford Street store

BHS Oxford street flagship store reportedly may eventually be owned by Abu Dhabi’s royal family according to Retail Gazette.  Lancer Property Asset Management who are working for the royal family, already owns the freehold of the site.

 

The future of BHS

11,000 BHS workers jobs at stake

The retailer Sports Direct it is believed wants some of BHS' stores, but will only acquire if it does not have to take on any pension liabilities.  No doubt Sports Direct owner billionaire Mike Ashley and owner of Newcastle United will have the pick of the BHS shops on the High Street to add to his retail presence. READ MORE

No doubt the plight of BHS will fill newspaper columns, make headline news and be covered by Social Media as this iconic High Street store group's story continues.