The creditors of Austradia Pty Ltd, which operated Topshop and Topman in Australia before its voluntary administration filing, are owed at least A$35 million following the collapse of the business, it has emerged.
But Myer, the Australian department stores giant that held a 20% stake and also hosts Topshop and Topman concessions in its stores, is not listed among theAsia creditors.
The Australian Financial Review reported that rescue negotiations with the UK brand owner Arcadia Group are dragging on with no resolution yet in sight.
The first creditors’ meeting saw the Commonwealth Bank of Australia emerging as the biggest creditor on A$12.1 million with Arcadia itself claiming A$8.8m (just over £5 million).
But while Myer is not on the list, it it believed to be owed several million dollars and had already written down its A$9.2 million equity stake to A$7.2 million, with further losses linked to the failure a possibility.
Although negotiations have not yet concluded, Arcadia is expected to take over the Australian business and buy back around A$12 million worth of inventory as part of a deal. It is unclear how much creditors would get back.
The Australian market is as tough as many other global markets at the moment and while Topshop was an early mover in the foreign invasion of its retail sector, the size of its operation was dwarfed by that of global giants H&M and Inditex.
With estimates that per capita spend on clothing in the country has risen just 0.1% in the past year, and that H&M, Uniqlo and Zara have been behind most of that, it is unsurprising that other retailers have struggled.
(Source: Fashion Network)