Provisional liquidator appointed to Coast fashion stores

Women’s fashion and accessories chain suffered in House of Fraser collapse

Karen Millen has agreed to buy Coast in the UK and is interested in taking on the Irish business too.

Karen Millen has agreed to buy Coast in the UK and is interested in taking on the Irish business too.

 

The High Court has appointed a provisional liquidator to Coast, the women’s fashion and accessories chain, which employs 99 full- and part-time staff here.

Coast Stores Ireland Ltd, part of the UK-based Coast group of fashion outlets, operates five standalone stores and a further 10 concession stands in the Republic. It sought a liquidator arising from difficulties experienced by its parent, including the collapse of department store group House of Fraser, where it had many concession stands, and difficult market conditions. The UK parent had been engaged in a sales process and that was accelerated in recent months, the court heard.

It is hoped the liquidator’s appointment will see parts of the Irish business sold off to a new parent and many of the jobs will be saved, it was also stated.

Following a sale process in the UK, the London-based Karen Millen fashion house has agreed to buy Coast in the UK and is also interested in acquiring Coast Stores Ireland’s concession stands, the court heard.

On Thursday, Ms Justice Caroline Costello said she was satisfied to appoint insolvency practitioner Declan McDonald of PricewaterhouseCoopers as provisional liquidator to Coast Stores Ireland Ltd.

Best interests

Seeking the appointment, Kelley Smith BL, for the company, said the decision to have it wound up was taken by its board in recent days. In light of the sale process in the UK, and given the interest in the Irish business, it was believed the appointment of a provisional liquidator was in the best interests of parties including the company’s employees, creditors and suppliers, counsel said.

Mr McDonald could deal with any sale of the company’s assets, including stock, and ensure an orderly winding up of the firm, she added.

The judge adjourned the matter to next month.