Retail round-up on June 6, 2016: Mike Ashley agrees to appear before MPs to defend 'good name' of Sports Direct and Walmart to trial grocery delivery in the US with Uber and Lyft.
Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia insisted on three protective covenants before BHS sale
Former BHS owner Retail Acquisitions has pledged to keep all funds in the business and plough any proceeds from the sale of the group’s properties into its day-to-day running until a deal had been struck on the future of the BHS pension scheme, according to the Guardian.
Documents sent to the parliamentary inquiry into the collapse of BHS are understood to reveal three protective covenants attached to the sale agreement with Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia Group.
The first covenant states that “all monies in or available to BHS at completion” of the deal, including cash and loans provided by Arcadia Group, “shall be used for the sole purpose of the day-to-day running of [BHS]”, informed sources said.
A second states that “all proceeds realised by [BHS] from the sale of the properties shall be retained by [BHS] and used for the sole purpose of the day-to-day running of the business of [BHS]” until a compromise agreement on the company’s pension funds had been agreed.
The final clause states that “no steps are taken by the buyer or [BHS] that would reasonably be expected to adversely affect the ability of [BHS] to continue to operate as a going concern and to pay their debts as they fall due”.
Sports Direct’s Mike Ashley decides to attend parliament to face questions
Sports Direct’s founder Mike Ashley has finally agreed to appear in front of MPs to ‘defend the good name’ of the retailer, just days after he pulled out of a parliamentary hearing.
Ashley has written to the Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) committee to say that he had a change of heart after careful consideration over the weekend.
He said: “I have therefore reconsidered my position and I am writing to confirm that I will now be attending parliament on Tuesday in order to defend the good name of Sports Direct on behalf of all of the great people who work here.”
Walmart to start grocery delivery pilot using Uber and Lyft
Walmart is set to trial grocery delivery service using Uber and Lyft drivers in an attempt to intensify competition with Amazon’s grocery-delivery service.
The US retailer will start piloting Uber in Denver and Lyft in Phoenix within the next two weeks, Walmart’s chief operating officer of e-commerce Michael Bender said in a blog post.
Under the new partnership, Walmart customers can place a delivery online and a Walmart employee will then request a driver from Uber or Lyft, the blog post said.
The driver will pick up the order and deliver it directly to the customer's location. Customers will be charged $7-10 for the service.
The testing will start in Denver, Colorado and one other city, reportedly Phoenix, Arizona.