American Apparel: 26 European stores await news
The future of American Apparel is a cause of concern in Europe too. While the US label has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection under US receivership law, there is widespread uncertainty about its European business.
The management of its UK organisation, which is currently running 13 American Apparel stores, have already expressed their doubts as to whether trading will continue after the year-end festivities.
In continental Europe, the business is managed by the American Apparel Deutschland GMBH subsidiary, which is in charge of 26 stores. As with the UK, the company is insolvent and went into receivership on November 8.
Wolf-Rüdiger von der Fecht, who is currently in charge of the business, explained to German press agency DPA that the stores have enough stock to continue trading for the next few weeks. Meanwhile, the operations of American Apparel e-commerce sites outside of the USA have been stopped, and stores in the Asia-Pacific region have already closed down.
The future of the business after 1st January 2017 remains a mystery for the teams working in the 11 French stores, the seven German stores, the two Italian stores and those in Sweden, Switzerland, Austria, the Netherlands, Spain and Belgium. The European subsidiary reportedly has 251 employees.
Several potential buyers are allegedly lining up to acquire the US brand, and Canadian group Gildan has already made an offer for purchasing the trademark rights alone. It remains to be seen whether international operations will be part of the plans for this contest's winner.
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