New Look is currently facing potential challenges in its efforts to secure support for its company voluntary arrangement (CVA), as reports suggest that some landlords have already rejected the proposed plan. According to The Mail on Sunday, up to 10 landlords have expressed their opposition to the CVA proposals. The approval of the CVA requires a 75% majority vote, which will take place on September 15. If the CVA is not approved, there are concerns that the company may have no other option but to go into liquidation. New Look’s CEO, Nigel Oddy, has stressed that the measures being implemented by the company are a result of the “absolute necessity.”

In addition to the landlords’ concerns, Retail Week has reported that some landlords are apprehensive about a lack of transparency when it comes to sales at individual New Look stores. The company is seeking to transition to turnover-based rents for most of its shops. However, landlords argue that they need access to data on individual store turnover in order to make informed decisions about the viability of this option. Unfortunately, New Look is reportedly not readily providing this data to landlords, which could hinder their ability to assess the situation accurately. One source expressed frustration, stating that the leasing model change should involve consensual negotiations rather than landlords having to constantly request the necessary data. Moreover, landlords are worried about the potential long-term implications of introducing turnover-based rents, as this could set a precedent for other retailers and become a permanent fixture for New Look.

These challenges underline the complexity and sensitivity of the restructuring process that New Look is currently undergoing. The company has emphasized the need for significant cost reductions and negotiations with landlords to secure its long-term viability. However, without sufficient support for its CVA, the future of the company remains uncertain. The vote on September 15 will undoubtedly be a pivotal moment for New Look and will determine its course of action in an exceedingly competitive retail industry.

Useful links:
1. Financial Times: “New Look faces challenges in securing support for CVA”
2. Retail Gazette: “New Look landlords concerned about transparency of turnover-based rents”