House of Fraser’s differences with XPO Logistics remain unresolved

According to GMB union representing workers at two XPO Logistics centres in Milton Keynes and Wellingborough, the company’s differences with the department store chain House of Fraser are yet to reach a compromise, reports Motor Transport. Last week, a Drapers report said that the company’s dispute with its warehouse operator was resolved.

According to the union, the stalemate between the two has also placed almost 627 people on the verge of losing their jobs. The report quoted a statement issued by the union last week stating: “We call on XPO and Sports Direct to come to an agreement that will stop 627 people facing redundancy. This isn’t just a game of profits – this is our members’ livelihoods on the line.”

House of Fraser had earlier announced that due to delays in delivering online orders, it had to cancel all orders and refund the customers after its warehouse operator XPO Logistics stopped processing orders due to a payment dispute. The company owes 30.4 million pounds to XPO Logistics. Mike Ashley owned Sports Direct purchased the struggling department store chain after it fell into administration, for 90 million pounds. However, media reports said, it is not legally bound to pay the suppliers’ money owed before the transaction took place.

House of Fraser blames ‘greedy landlords’ for blocking store closure plans

Meanwhile, according to the Guardian, while Sports Direct is trying to save several House of Fraser stores from closure, a House of Fraser spokesman told the Press Association on Tuesday that time was running out for deals to be struck. So far locations including the House of Fraser flagship on Oxford Street in central London, and other stores in Plymouth, Darlington and Middlesbrough have been saved.

The report further quoted the spokesman saying: “Some landlords are being very collaborative in order to give us a chance at turning the business around, giving House of Fraser a lifeline and saving hundreds of jobs. However, some greedy landlords would rather see the stores close than help save the jobs of hundreds of people. We will continue to try and convince these landlords but ultimately time is running out. Some closures will be announced.”

Before the company went into administration, House of Fraser had announced that its company voluntary arrangement (CVA) proposals filed on June 6, 2018 will see closure of 31 of its 59 department stores, including its Oxford Street flagship resulting in about 6,000 job losses. However, immediately after the company filed for administration, Ashley acquired the company with a 90 million pounds rescue deal.

Picture:House of Fraser via Yankeemagazines

 

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