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Ted Baker and the 25 million pounds missing stock mystery

By Don-Alvin Adegeest


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Retailers and fashion companies sitting on unsold stock is commonplace news. Back in 2018 reports of high street retailer H&M’s mounting inventory worth 4.3 billion dollars showed a volatile fast fashion industry struggling to reconcile expansion, high volume production and changing consumer habits.

But it is not just unsold stock that is plaguing retailers. At Ted Baker a probe is currently underway to find 25 million pounds of missing stock it failed to account for in its inventory statement. It is a mystery the company is unable to solve itself, appointing accountancy firm Deloitte to decipher its large-scale accountancy blunder.

Earlier this month, Ted Baker’s board estimated the value of inventory on its balance sheet was overstated by 20 to 25 million pounds, according to Retail Sector. Sky News revealed Deloitte was appointed earlier this week, and will work alongside the law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer on the inquiry.

The disclosure of the inventory overstatement came after a difficult year for the retailer, which saw founder Ray Kelvin step down as chief executive following allegations about his conduct and inappropriately “hugging” staff members and other sexual harassment claims.

Ted Baker said in statement to the BBC: “Ted Baker is committed to ensuring the independent review is completed in an efficient and transparent manner and will update the market as appropriate. Whilst the review is ongoing, the company will not comment further.”

Photo via Ted Baker media centre

Ted Baker