World News

Ted Baker says 38% of global retail sales hit by coronavirus

(Reuters) – Troubled fashion retailer Ted Baker Plc <TED.L> said on Friday it has shut businesses that accounted for about 38% of its global retail sales in 2020 due to the coronavirus outbreak.

It has closed 197 retail stores and concessions out of 416 locations globally with full shutdown in the United States, Canada, France, Spain, Germany, Portugal and Belgium.

In other markets, the retailer said it was facing reduced trading hours, but added it was too early to provide a guidance for financial year 2020.

However, the fashion retailer said it has seen very less supply chain disruption so far from the outbreak and that the majority of its factories in China are now operational.

Ted Baker said its “inventory levels are sufficient”, but it was suspending all non-essential capital expenditure and restricting travel to reduce costs and shore up cashflow.

Last month, the company decided to cut 102 jobs to reduce costs. The retailer suffered a string of setbacks last year, including profit warnings, inventory overstatement, suspension of dividend payments and management changes following misconduct allegations against founder and top shareholder Ray Kelvin, who has denied them.

Separately, the company said it has entered into a deal with a British Airways Pension Trustees unit to sell the entire issued share capital of its unit Big Lobster for a sale consideration of 78.75 million pounds ($91.23 million).

(Reporting by Sabahatjahan Contractor in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)