Fashion retailer Jane Norman stores placed in administration

Fashion retailer Jane Norman is to disappear from the high street after its owner put it into administration.

The UK brand has had financial problems in the past with its current owner, Edinburgh Woollen Mill, buying a pared down version of the chain out of administration in 2011.

In a statement confirming the appointment of a restructuring firm Grant Thornton, the company said it was “no longer able to continue to support its loss-making UK and Ireland retail stores”. It said the 24-store chain had been placed in administration in a move that puts 157 jobs at risk.

“Like many retailers, we have seen extremely challenging conditions on the high street for several years in what is a very competitive sector in young fashion,” said the company. “While we have made every effort for a number of years to makes those stores work, that part of the business is no longer viable.”

Jane Norman employs 57 full time staff and about 100 part-time. “We intend to continue trading the stores for as long as possible with a view to achieving the best outcome for all concerned, in particular those people based in the stores,” said Grant Thornton partner Les Ross. “It is likely, however, that store closures are inevitable.”

The brand will not be axed altogether. Edinburgh Woollen Mill, which also owns Peacocks, intends to sell its clothing online and in department stores overseas. “We fundamentally believe in the Jane Norman brand and its future as a web and international concessions business,” it said. “For that reason we have taken the difficult decision to restructure the business to focus on future opportunities.”

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