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Shoe chain Aldo collapses amid retail woe

Laura Onita
Shoe chain Aldo is the latest retailer to collapse  - PA

Shoe chain Aldo is the latest retailer to collapse during the pandemic in the UK just weeks after its Canadian parent company sought creditor protection abroad. 

The UK arm has now shut five stores, with administrators at RSM working to explore “future options” for its remaining eight stores. 

The retailer said that coronavirus coupled with “historic profitability challenges”, as well as an “unprecedented collapse in retail spending” led to its administration.

It follows the collapse of Debenhams, Laura Ashley, Cath Kidston and Oasis and Warehouse since the outbreak took hold. 

Shoppers will still be able to buy shoes and accessories on Aldo’s UK website. Its concessions in Selfridges, House of Fraser and Debenhams are expected to reopen when the lockdown is relaxed. 

David Bensadoun, chief executive of the Aldo group, said: “It is a difficult decision to close our stores in the UK, but it is unavoidable given the current business environment and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.”

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The move comes almost a month after the company sought creditor protection in Canada, the US and Switzerland. It also exited the Irish market last month. 

The division posted a loss of £5.4m in 2019 on sales of £29m in 2019. It already shut four underperforming stores last year. 

Fashion chains up and down the country were forced to shut stores in March and now they have to contend with piles of unsold stock. 

Restructuring advisers expect more casualties in the coming months, with businesses that were struggling before the pandemic in danger.