Cath Kidston, the renowned British retailer famous for its charming floral patterns and vintage designs, has recently announced its decision to appoint administrators due to the devastating impact of the coronavirus crisis. This move has put nearly 1,000 jobs in jeopardy and comes after the company had sought the assistance of advisors to urgently review its business, including the possibility of a quick sale.

Although appointing administrators does not necessarily mean that the company has filed for administration, it does offer some relief and protection from creditors. Cath Kidston has been facing challenges for quite some time now, with its latest financial report from March 2018 revealing a staggering loss of over £10 million.

Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, Cath Kidston had been in the process of implementing a turnaround plan. Unfortunately, the pandemic drastically affected its operations in the UK and internationally. Despite these difficulties, there have been signs of potential buyers expressing interest. However, in situations like these, it is common for buyers to prefer acquiring the company through a pre-pack administration, which allows for the closure of unprofitable stores and staff reductions without the burden of ongoing liabilities.

Presently, Cath Kidston operates 60 stores in the UK and sells its products in 200 locations worldwide. The company has been under the ownership of Baring Private Equity Asia since 2016, as the private equity firm recognized the brand’s significant potential in the Asian market. This recent turn of events is a stark contrast to last year when Cath Kidston was exploring opportunities for expansion. The brand launched dynamic marketing campaigns featuring model Poppy Delevingne, collaborated with Disney, recruited a new digital director from Victoria Beckham’s team, and even experimented with pop-up stores in Canada as a test for potential permanent locations.

What lies ahead for Cath Kidston remains uncertain. The appointment of administrators buys the company some time to consider its options and attract potential buyers. However, with the current challenges posed by the coronavirus crisis, the retail industry has become even more unpredictable and recovery paths appear more daunting for struggling brands like Cath Kidston.

Useful links relevant to the article:
– [Cath Kidston website](
– [BBC News article on Cath Kidston’s struggle](