Green reveals £135m Arcadia rescue plan
Written by Peter Walker
Philip Green will invest £135 million into Arcadia Group in an attempt to rescue his retail empire.
In an email sent to Arcadia’s 18,000 staff, chief executive Ian Grabiner explained £75 million will be spent on renovating its stores and £60 million will be used to upgrade its online operations.
The investment will be rolled out over the next three years across Arcadia’s retail brands. Improvements include introducing a VIP service and a deal with Asos to sell Topshop and Topman clothing on the e-commerce giant’s website.
The letter comes a week after Arcadia launched Company Voluntary Agreements (CVAs) which earmarked 23 stores for closure, at the cost of 520 jobs. Rent will be reduced on 194 other stores, while all 11 Topman and Topshop stores in the US are set to either close down or be sold off.
Another 25 stores under the Evans and Miss Selfridge fascias will shut down as part of separate insolvency proceedings, including the flagship Miss Selfridge store on Oxford Street.
The CVA proposals also included halving contributions to Arcadia’s pension deficit from £50 million to £25 million. Green has since offered to provide £185 million in additional funds from property assets to help reduce the deficit, which reportedly stands at around £565 million.
Meanwhile, his wife and major shareholder Tina Green is set to invest £50 million of equity into the business, on top of £50 million she has already loaned, if the CVA is approved.