Coronavirus: Luggage brand Antler crashes into administration

Antler Holdings, the luggage-maker, has become the latest victim of the coronavirus pandemic after being forced to call in administrators.

Sky News understands that Antler collapsed late on Monday, just three months after being bought by Michael Lewis, the fashion tycoon behind brands such as Phase Eight.

KPMG, which has been appointed as administrator, is understood to be making the majority of the luggage company’s 200-strong workforce redundant immediately.

Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, Antler traded from 18 standalone shops and one concession.

Its products are also sold at outlets of John Lewis and Selfridges, while its brand is also licensed to third parties in Australia and Asia.

Planes stored at Cotswold Airport as airlines seek cheap storage options
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The COVID-19 pandemic has crippled the travel sector

Antler’s own stores are now likely to shut permanently, although KPMG plans to trade the business in administration through online channels such as Amazon.

Most of Antler’s employees had been furloughed under the government’s emergency wage subsidy scheme since the beginning of the UK-wide lockdown in March.

Like other companies exposed to the international travel industry, luggage-makers have seen sales collapse in recent months.

Antler was bought by Mr Lewis’s ATR Holdings from Endless, the turnaround investor, in February.

KPMG, which is expected to confirm its appointment as administrator to Antler as early as Tuesday morning, declined to comment.

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