Wilko suspends home deliveries amid administration fears

Home deliveries have been suspended on retailer Wilko’s website as the company risks collapsing into administration if it cannot secure new funding by Monday 14 August.

The delivery option on Wilko.com is currently showing as ‘unavailable’ on all items, although ‘click & collect’ is still an option for many products. Wilko previously offered a range of home delivery options, from ‘standard’ to ‘next day’.

This comes after the retailer filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators last Thursday, triggering a 10-day window wherein finances must be secured.

In a statement on Thursday, Chief Executive Mark Jackson said: “We’ll continue to progress discussions with interested parties with the aim of completing a transaction which preserves the business.”

Logistics Manager contacted Wilko about the expected length of the home delivery suspension and the steps currently being taken to save the company from collapse, but it was unwilling to comment.

It was confirmed in November 2022 that Wilko had sold its distribution centre in Worksop, Nottinghamshire to DHL for £48 million and leased it back. However, two months later it was announced that DHL had itself sold the 1.1m ft² site to asset management company Brookfield for £88m.

Reports estimate that 1,800 of the 12,000 Wilko jobs at risk nationally are based in the Nottinghamshire town. A further 500 are expected to be at risk in Gwent, Wales – where Wilko operates its second distribution centre in the village of Magor.

UPDATE (10 August 2023): Wilko has failed to secure emergency investment and will go into administration, with administrators being appointed from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

In an open letter, Jackson said: “We left no stone unturned when it came to preserving this incredible business but must concede that with regret, we’ve no choice but to take the difficult decision to enter into administration.”

He explained: “While we can confirm we’ve had a significant level of interest, including indicative offers that we believe would meet all our financial criteria to recapitalise the business, at present we don’t today have an offer that provides the necessary liquidity in the time we have available, given the mounting cash pressures we’re faced with.”

PwC have told Logistics Manager that, as with its 400 stores, Wilko’s distribution centres are “continuing to operate with staff being paid”. However, home deliveries and click & collect are set to be unavailable for the foreseeable future.

Source: logisticsmanager.com

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