On 11 April, Agent Provocateur Inc. has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US, claiming assets between $1 million to10 million and liabilities between US $10 million to 50 million. The company intends to protect its US store leases with the new bankruptcy protection and sell its 12 US stores to Four Marketing, a division of Four Holdings, which has acquired the UK-based lingerie company in March for US $38 million (£31 million).
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Earlier this year the Agent Provocateur went up for sale, catching the attention of Terra Firma Capital partners, former La Senza owner Lion, specialist turnaround investor Endless, French womens wear brand Etam, and eventual buyer Mike Ashley, owner of Sports Direct. Through Sports Direct, Ashley has a 25 percent shareholding of Four Holdings.
Decline in luxury spending, inconsistency in retail expansion and accounting issues are the reasons cited for the consequent filing for bankruptcy.