BHS online business to close down two years after high street chain’s collapse

Retailer went bust two years ago but online and international operations taken over by Qatari firm

The high street department store chain went out of business in 2016
The high street department store chain went out of business in 2016

BHS.com will close down this month, after a strategic review by its Qatar based owner Al Mana Group.

The website of the online UK business, which launched a few months after the high street brand went bust in 2016, will shut down on 27 July. The group said final deliveries will be made to customers by 5 July.

The Al Mana Group said it has decided to “focus resources on their stores-based businesses”, and added that it “remains fully committed to expanding and investing in BHS International, its franchise stores business”.

The Qatari company bought BHS’s online and international operations from administrators in June 2016, and earlier this year opened four stores in Iraq.

Last year, BHS International reported turnover of £11.7m, with £5m coming from the UK and £6.7m from the rest of the world.

A BHS company spokesperson said: “The 18 members of our BHS.com team, along with all suppliers, will be treated fairly and equitably as the website is closed down. We’d like to thank our team, suppliers and our customers for all their support over the past 20 months.”

BHS went into administration in 2016, putting 11,000 jobs on the line, after failing to find emergency funding of £60m.

The collapse came less than a year after the department store chain was sold by Sir Philip Green for £1 to Retail Acquisitions, led by former racing driver Dominic Chappell.

Both Mr Chappell and Mr Green were questioned by MPs over the failure of the company, which left 20,000 workers’ pensions at risk.

Earlier this year, Mr Chappell was found guilty of failing to provide information about the state of a pension fund at Brighton Magistrates’ Court. Following the conviction, the Insolvency Service said it planned to ban the former BHS owner from serving as a company director for up to 15 years.

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