Spotlight back on Sir Philip Green
Arcadia Group is reportedly seeking to restructure its operations via a mooted CVA which would enable the group to shed up to 67 unprofitable stores whilst achieving significant rent reductions on those it seeks to retain. This action in itself could see thousands of retail workers lose their jobs.
In addition, the media has leapt upon the group's proposal to reduce the contributions it makes to its pension scheme. With memories of the BHS debacle and the deal cut to plug its pension deficit a not too distant memory, it is not expected that the Pensions Regulator or the government will allow this latest move without considerable scrutiny and water-tight guarantees. Given the raft of recent negative news surrounding the retail sector, which even saw Mike Ashley made a statement to the effect that he had zero interest in acquiring the Arcadia business, it also seems implausible that Arcadia's CVA proposals will win support from creditors, even though it is being suggested that Arcadia may woo landlords with shares in its business.
Deloitte has already been instructed to carry out a review of the Arcadia Group business and GCW has been called upon to represent the group during negotiations with landlords.