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Gloucestershire Business News

Fashion retailer with a prime Cheltenham store is set to close

A shop that operates in a prime position on Cheltenham's Promenade is set to close.

High-end fashion retailer Karen Millen has been put in administration with the online side of the business and intellectual property rights purchased by boohoo group plc.

Boohoo have paid £18.2million to secure the Karen Millen and Coast brands, but they will only takeover the online side of the business.

Karen Millen have a store on the Promenade in Cheltenham

Coast have a concession in Cheltenham's House of Fraser store, which is also set to close as a result of the purchase.

Between the two brands there are 32 High Street stores and 177 concessions, employing 1,100 people all of which are at risk.

The closure of the stores is a significant blow to one of Cheltenham's most prominent retail locations.

The Karen Millen store occupies one of the best sites on The Promenade and fits in perfectly with the high-end reputation Cheltenham has with shoppers.

The brand, which was founded by Karen Millen and Kevin Stanford in 1981 will continue to operate, but only online.

In a statement announcing the purchase, boohoo said: The Group believes that the online business of these brands are highly complementary additions to its scalable multi-brand platform.

"Their acquisition extends the Group's offer as part of its vision to lead the fashion e-commerce market globally.

"In its most recent financial year to February 2019, unaudited management information shows that direct online sales from the websites of Karen Millen and Coast totalled £28.4m.

John Lyttle, Group CEO, said: "The acquisition of the online business of two great and renowned British brands in Karen Millen and Coast represents another milestone in the Group's growth story as it continues to invest in its scalable multi-brand platform and gain further share in the global fashion e-commerce market."

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