Around 500 jobs have been lost after men’s clothing retailer Officers Club entered administration today.
A total of 56 stores and the warehouse function of the business have been closed with immediate effect as Grant Thornton partners Joe McLean and Les Ross were appointed joint administrators.
Fellow fashion retailer Blue Inc has purchased the remaining 46 stores, which safeguards around 400 jobs.
McLean said the generally challenging trading conditions experienced in 2010, as well as the rising cost of raw materials contributed to the retailer’s predicament.
“It was not possible to pass these increases on to customers given the extremely price sensitive nature of the UK retail arena,” he explained.
“The directors did not see any improvement forthcoming in the early months of 2011 and, mindful of their legal responsibilities, concluded reluctantly that administration was in the best interests of the company’s creditors and other stakeholders.”
It is the second time in just over two years that Officers Club has been placed in administration, but in 2008 founder and CEO Dave Charlton bought the company out of administration.
Earlier this year the Red Flag Alert report from business recovery firm Begbies Traynor estimated that 10,250 companies in the retail sector were facing financial distress in the final quarter of 2010.
Officers Club joins retailers such as fashion chain Fenchurch and Clinton Cards’ Birthdays Ireland arm on the list of companies to enter administration in 2011 so far.