“Launching a consultation process was an extremely difficult decision for us, but we need to respond to these difficult market conditions, protect the maximum number of jobs possible and secure the future of the business, “said Thierry Andretta of Mulberry. General manager. “We remain confident in the strength of the Mulberry brand and our long-term strategy.”
The company expects the impact of the coronavirus on its business will translate into a gradual recovery in sales over the medium term.
Mulberry, which has reopened stores in China, South Korea, Europe and Canada, plans to begin the gradual reopening of some of its stores in the UK starting June 15.
“Even after the stores reopen, social distancing measures, lower attendance and attendance rates will continue to have an impact on our revenues,” the company said.
Mulberry said that although it continued to trade online throughout the pandemic, with good sales, it was unable to compensate for the drop in revenues due to store closings and of high street concessions.
“Despite the good performance of our industry-leading digital and omnichannel platform and our global network of digital dealerships, the closure of all our physical stores has had and will continue to have a marked effect on our business,” said Andretta .
Mulberry has maintained a “positive dialogue” with lenders to ensure that its balance sheet remains solid. The company has net cash and has not had to use any of its borrowing facilities.
“We reacted quickly to manage the impact of Covid-19 and continue to execute a well-developed plan to manage capital, reduce costs and maintain a strong liquidity position,” said Andretta.
Mulberry has 55 stores in the UK, including 19 dealerships in John Lewis stores and 14 in House of Fraser stores. Outside the UK, Mulberry has 68 stores.