Adler Modemärkte files for bankruptcy

Bag of Adler

In 2019, Adler Modemärkte AG said it had a turnover of 500 million euros.

(Photo: dpa)

Haibach The fashion retailer Adler fashion stores AG files for bankruptcy. The company announced on Sunday evening that the aim was a self-administered procedure to reorganize the company. The business operations should be continued in full under the supervision of a trustee. The application was submitted to the Aschaffenburg district court.

The trigger for the application was “the considerable loss of sales due to the closure of almost all sales branches since mid-December 2020 as a result of the recent Covid-19 lockdown”. Despite intensive efforts, it was not possible to close the resulting liquidity gap by injecting capital through state support funds or through investors.

“The renewed Corona-related closure of almost all locations unfortunately left us no other choice,” said CEO Thomas Freude. “We will do everything we can to maintain business operations and to restructure Adler as quickly as possible and lead it back into a positive future.”

The board of directors remains authorized to administer and dispose of. This lawyer has appointed Christian Gerloff as general agent for support. Adler Mode GmbH, Adler Orange GmbH & Co. KG and Adler Orange Verwaltung GmbH, each of which are wholly owned subsidiaries, have also decided to apply to the Aschaffenburg District Court to open insolvency proceedings under self-administration.

According to its own information, Adler Modemärkte AG currently operates 171 stores, 142 of them in Germany, as well as an online shop. There are other markets in Austria, Luxembourg and Switzerland. The focus was on the age group from 55 years.

In the red since 2019

In 2019, the fashion retailer had sales of almost 500 million euros. As of September 30, 2020, the company had 3,350 employees.

At the beginning of November, Adler Mode had reported a “noticeable upward trend”. However, liquid funds had already shrunk to 24.8 (end of 2019: 70) million euros at the end of September. Adler survived the first lockdown in the spring with short-time work and a loan secured with a government guarantee. The company had drawn 45 million euros of this at the end of October.

Sales shrank in the first nine months by a third to 239 million euros, the net loss grew to 63 (10) million. However, Adler was already in the red in 2019.

The company could not rely on its majority shareholder: S&E Kapital, which holds almost 53 percent of the shares, had been trying to sell its stake for months. Behind S&E are Steilmann SE, which has been insolvent for a good four years, and the financial investor Equinox.

Many companies in the fashion industry were not doing well before the corona crisis. The triumph of online retail and the success of fast fashion providers such as Primark or Zara they had little to oppose. The coronavirus hit victims of manufacturers and retailers who had previously been damaged, so to speak, when it caused shop closings across Germany in spring 2020.

More: German luxury fashion retailer specifies plans for an IPO in the USA.


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