British fashion designer Amanda Wakeley’s eponymous label has fallen into administration after failing to find a buyer, becoming the latest casualty of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Joint administrators from Smith & Williamson LLP said the company’s trading performance “suffered” due to the pandemic, in particular at its Mayfair store and concessions which were forced to shut in line with multiple lockdowns over the past year.
The brand, which opened its first store in Chelsea in 1990, specialises in dresses, bridal and occasion wear - all categories that suffered over the past year due to Covid restrictions and the cancellation of physical events.
The label counted Princess Diana and former prime minister Theresa May among its fans.
Amanda Wakeley fails to find buyer
“Despite an extensive marketing process, attracting significant interest, and a huge effort from Amanda Wakeley and the company’s staff, it was not possible to find a buyer for the business,” said joint administrator Colin Hardman in a statement.
“The board therefore had to make the difficult decision to place the company into administration.”
Hardman added that “a small number” of redundancies had been made.
Founder and creative director Amanda Wakeley said: “During the pre-administration phase, the company’s staff worked tirelessly with me, and Smith & Williamson, to maximise sales and mitigate the impact of insolvency on the company’s creditors. To this core team and those who have worked at Wakeley over the years, thank you.
“I am also very grateful for the support and expertise of our leading equity investor who has been a valuable partner since 2012.
“To our customers, many of whom have become our friends, thank you for your loyalty. It is an honour to design for you and I am deeply touched by the many messages of support concerning my family and the business through the crisis.”