26 Oct 2016

Pumpkin Patch goes into receivership

2:19 pm on 26 October 2016

Troubled children's clothing retailer Pumpkin Patch has gone into receivership.

Some of the 160 Pumpkin Patch stores across New Zealand and Australia are likely to close within weeks, receivers say.

Some of the 160 Pumpkin Patch stores across New Zealand and Australia are likely to close within weeks, receivers say. Photo: Flickr / Jason Hutchens

The company said it had tried to turn the business around over the past four years, but it had not been able to trade its way out of a mountain of debt of about $48.5 million, at the end of July.

It reported a $20.2m net loss in the year to 31 July, with sales falling 11 percent to $212.4m.

In a written statement, KordaMentha said it had been appointed as receiver for Pumpkin Patch and its subsidiaries.

KordaMentha partner Brendon Gibson said all 160 Pumpkin Patch and Charlie & Me stores in New Zealand and Australia were still open, but some were likely to close within a few weeks.

"Prior to the receivership, Pumpkin Patch had already announced that it planned to close further stores over the next two to three years," Mr Gibson said.

"This programme will now accelerate... Sadly, this will result in some job losses and we will be communicating directly with the staff concerned as soon as possible."

The company and its subsidiaries employed about 1600 staff across Australasia.

The receivership announcement followed an announcement by Pumpkin Patch earlier today that it had gone into voluntary administration.

"The board believes that the constraints currently experienced by the business are too great and the only appropriate action to best protect the interests of stakeholders is to appoint administrators," the company said in a statement to the NZX.

Andrew Grenfell and Conor McElhinney of McGrathNicol had been appointed to act as administrators for the company and a number of its subsidiaries.

KordaMentha said Pumpkin Patch and Charlie & Me gift vouchers would be honoured on a dollar-for-dollar basis - for example, a $40 purchase could be paid for using a $20 voucher and $20 cash.

Pumpkin Patch is the second public listed company this week to go into voluntary administration.

The crime software company Wynyard Group was also placed in voluntary administration earlier this week.

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