Made.com is searching for a purchaser or emergency funding because the embattled on-line furnishings retailer plans to shed greater than a 3rd of employees to stretch its dwindling money reserves.
The corporate, which in July warned of job cuts as more and more cash-strapped shoppers stopped spending on “big-ticket” objects, has withdrawn full-year steerage as gross sales plummet.
Made.com employed 673 employees on common final yr, together with greater than 320 in advertising and marketing and merchandise and 290 in administration roles, and instituted a hiring freeze as the start of the yr.
It’s searching for to make 35% of staff redundant – greater than 200 individuals – by the tip of subsequent month.
The corporate, which floated on the London Inventory Trade final yr, had thought of turning to the markets to boost extra funds, however now says the dire circumstances are “not supportive on the present time of elevating enough fairness from public market traders”.
It’s endeavor a strategic overview taking a look at choices together with debt financing, discovering a strategic investor, a sale of the corporate or a merger with one other enterprise.
“Whereas the group has had quite a lot of strategic discussions with events, the group isn’t in receipt of any approaches, nor in discussions with any potential offeror, on the time of this announcement,” mentioned the corporate, which has appointed PwC to deal with the strategic overview and sale course of.
Shares in Made.com, which has issued three revenue warnings this yr, have slumped by 98% to solely 4p since its flotation in June 2021. Its market worth has plunged from £775m to £15m.
“When Made.com joined the inventory market, nobody would have thought the enterprise would have been put up on the market 15 months later after a disastrous buying and selling interval,” mentioned Russ Mould, funding director at stockbroker AJ Bell.
“It floated at a time when individuals have been sprucing up their houses having spent a lot time indoors in the course of the numerous lockdowns. However Made.com rapidly grew to become unstuck due to supply-chain issues with clients ready months for his or her sofas to be delivered, resulting in cancellations and frustration.
“Then the price of residing disaster bit and big-ticket objects like a brand new three-piece have been placed on the backburner, all contributing to a extreme droop in Made.com’s share value and a slew of revenue warnings.”
Because the begin of the yr, the London-based firm has applied measures to try to protect its funds, together with limiting ahead buying of stock, implementing a hiring freeze, halting advertising and marketing spend and decreasing capital expenditure.
“With a view to lengthen the group’s money runway additional, the board has concluded that prices should be decreased additional and a course of has commenced to implement further price reductions, together with a strategic headcount overview, throughout the subsequent few weeks,” Made.com mentioned.
The corporate can also be consolidating its provide chain in Europe and Vietnam, closing its operations in China, and decreasing its warehouse capability due to decrease ranges of client demand. Customer support will likely be outsourced to a 3rd get together.
“No matter occurs, it appears to be like like present shareholders could also be worn out or be left with a mere fraction of their unique funding,” Mould mentioned.