Johnsons Shoes, an esteemed footwear retailer in the UK, has recently succumbed to administration due to the devastating effects of the coronavirus pandemic. This longstanding family business, which has been in operation for 50 years, has been compelled to shut down all 12 of its stores in order to prevent the spread of the virus.
The administrators in charge, Ian Defty and Richard Toone from CVR Global, have taken the decision to retain all 145 staff members on furlough in the hope of finding a buyer who can not only salvage the company but also safeguard the valuable jobs at stake.
With its brands Johnsons Shoes and Bowleys Fine Shoes, Johnsons Shoes Company has a strong presence in various cities and towns across the UK, including Windsor, Newbury, Staines, Teddington, New Malden, and Twickenham. These stores offer a wide range of well-known brands such as Timberland, Hotter, Barbour, Loake, Clarks, Gabor, Ugg, and Ecco.
Ian Defty, a partner at CVR Global, explained that the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent lockdown measures have had a severe impact on Johnsons Shoes Company, making it impossible for them to continue their operations. He also mentioned that the company was already facing challenges prior to the pandemic, struggling with issues like rising rent, business rates, and competition from online retailers.
Despite the difficult circumstances, the administrators remain optimistic as they have received significant interest in the company from potential buyers. Their primary objective is to secure the best possible deal for the creditors and find a buyer who can help Johnsons Shoes adapt to the evolving retail landscape, potentially through online platforms. By embracing the opportunities offered by e-commerce, the company stands a strong chance of carrying on its legacy and upholding its well-established reputation in the industry.
It is important to acknowledge the widespread appeal of Johnsons Shoes’ products, catering to the diverse needs of families. With the right buyer and a strategic approach to e-commerce, the company has immense potential for continued growth and further expansion, building upon the solid legacy it has cultivated over several decades.
Overall, the fall of Johnsons Shoes into administration serves as a stark reminder of the challenges faced by traditional brick-and-mortar retailers in the aftermath of the pandemic. However, it also emphasizes the significance of adaptability and the need to find innovative solutions to navigate these difficult times.