Article

FRP-led Restructuring Plan provides Clintons with viable future

Tuesday August 29, 2023

A multi-disciplinary team at FRP provided financial advice to Clintons

A cross-disciplinary team from specialist business advisory firm FRP has helped Esquire Retail Limited (t/a Clintons) to secure a Restructuring Plan ruling that enables the business to continue its transformation and avoid insolvency.

Clintons is a well-known retailer of greeting cards and has a network of stores across the UK. Since the Covid-19 pandemic, the business sought to ‘right-size’ its operations to reflect the challenges facing the wider UK high street.

Since 2019, Clintons had been forced to close 159 stores in response to changing consumer behaviour, increased online competition, the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, inflationary pressures and increasing rents and business rates. Without further restructuring the business was facing insolvency.

The Restructuring Plan will enable Clintons to continue with its transformation plan and trade confidently with a more sustainable structure.

Experts from across FRP worked with Clintons management to create the proposal, including Phil Reynolds and Tom Berry from the Restructuring Advisory team and Jim Davies from Financial Advisory. Ben Larkin at Jones Day provided legal advice.

Phil Reynolds, Restructuring Advisory Partner at FRP, said: “The retail sector is continuing to feel the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing testing economic conditions that have made some business models unviable. This ruling shows how powerful Restructuring Plans can be in supporting companies experiencing financial distress and providing an alternative to a value destructive insolvency process. It also shows how important it is for leadership teams to act early and decisively when exploring restructuring options.

“This agreed proposal sets out a sustainable future for Clintons, enabling it to continue trading and retain the majority proportion of its high street presence. We wish the team all the best for the future.”

The announcement comes after FRP helped Prezzo Investco Limited secure a Restructuring Plan in the face of challenge by HMRC. The ruling saw Prezzo become the first mid-market company to secure such an agreement in the face of such challenge.

Related team

Philip Reynolds

Philip Reynolds

Philip Reynolds

  • Partner
  • Restructuring Advisory
  • London
Jim Davies

Jim Davies

Jim Davies

  • Partner
  • Financial Advisory
  • London