Matalan has confirmed it is asking landlords for a three month rent holiday to alleviate the economic pressures caused by COVID-19.
The British fashion and homeware retailer is one of several businesses asking for rent forfeit amid the coronavirus outbreak.
A spokesperson for Matalan told TheIndustry.fashion: “Along with the rest of the retail sector, Matalan finds itself in an unprecedented situation. Prior to announcing our store closures, we saw a significant reduction in store footfall and traffic online, severely impacting the sales performance.
“As a result, we are working with our stakeholders and taking the necessary action to manage the impact, and protect the business, colleagues and customers during this challenging period. We want to thank our dedicated employees and stakeholders for supporting us through this difficult time.”
At the time of writing, Matalan is still operating from their website, offering a contactless delivery option and extending the length of its returns policy.
Earlier this month, Matalan unveiled a confident new brand positioning campaign, under the strapline “Real Life Ready”.
The value fashion chain commissioned McCann Manchester to create a new TV ad, featuring a range of real-life scenarios such as a busy mum juggling twins, to women attending an exercise class and women on a girls’ night out.
According to TheIndustry.fashion’s latest brand and retail tracker, The Index, produced in partnership with the Pay later company Klarna, Matalan is the third most popular value fashion retailer in the UK, behind Primark and George at Asda.
The Manchester-based chain has a “Buzz Score” (an approval rating derived from netting consumers’ positive and negative sentiment off against each other) of +13%, compared to +19% for Primark and +18% for George at Asda. Marks & Spencer, which is currently the most popular fashion store on the UK high street overall, has an approval rating, or Buzz Score, of +11%.