Jaeger and Peacocks have fallen into administration, placing 4,700 jobs at risk.
It comes as owner EWM Group failed to secure a buyer for the brands before a set deadline, despite “constructive discussions” with buyers in recent weeks.
Tony Wright and Alastair Massey, partners at FRP Advisory, have been appointed as joint administrators of the brands.
Jaeger currently operates 76 stores and concessions and employs 347 staff, while Peacocks operates 423 stores and employs 4,369 staff. No store closures or redundancies have been confirmed as of yet, however.
The EWM Group said it was a “desperately difficult” decision, adding that the “continuing deterioration of the retail sector due to the impact of the pandemic and second lockdown have made this process longer and more complex than we would have hoped”.
News of the administration comes only weeks after the Edinburgh Woollen Mill group called in administrators to conduct a review of the business.
The group said it was “responding to the harsh trading conditions caused by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and a recent reduction in its credit insurance” and the review was part of a drive to “secure their future”.
It added that the move would give the business “necessary breathing space” while it assessed the various options available, noting that it had received a number of expressions of interest for various parts of the group which were being “assessed along with all other options”.
Last month, the owner of menswear retailer TM Lewin was reportedly considering a bid for Jaeger. According to Sky News, Torque Brands, the investment vehicle formed by businessman James Cox, was one of a small number of businesses which had expressed interest in acquiring the brand.
In addition, Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group reportedly claimed it was “frozen out” of the auction to acquire the brands earlier this month. According to The Telegraph, the group “expressed interest” in the purchasing of Jaeger, Peacocks and Edinburgh Woollen Mill, but later claimed that FRP Advisory had been “unhelpful throughout the process”.
It accused FRP advisory of “refusing to provide or providing very slowly the normal information a buyer would expect”.