Wednesday, November 26, 2008
As the NBR website has just announced, New Zealand designer furniture store Eon went into receivership at 4pm yesterday afternoon.
I received a call about half an hour ago from a source saying that there's a security guard standing at attention outside the store. According to the NBR there's a 30% off sale going on at the store, located in the Britomart shopping precinct right now. That's the second Britomart store I've heard to be struggling in one week. Murray Crane's Gubb and Mackie store is closing down shortly, and he had this to say when I asked if the Britomart development hadn't worked so well for them:
"No it's just not a good time to be pioneering a new store, in a new retail precinct, in the current economy."
I got my confirmation about the receivership when I called Sonta Bredesen, who, according to the company's website, is Eon's Design Services Manager (pictured above). Her phone went to an answering machine message which said,
"Hi this is Sonta Bredesen, Business Manager at Eon Design Centre. I'm unable to take your call, if it is regarding an outstanding account, please contact the receiver, [name and phone number omitted]. Thanks!"
I feel for the young designers that Eon stocks. Will they get paid for their orders? As Anjali Stewart of twentysevennames told me last week,
"We had a store that went into liquidation this season and a store that just cancelled their order because they're afraid of what's happening. We could handle that with maybe two or three of our orders, but say five of our big accounts did that, that's it, we're folded, we're done."
Let's hope the same fate doesn't befall Eon's young designers.
UPDATE: 27/11 To see just how much impact this will have on the furniture suppliers, read this article on Eon's receivership from the NBR. The security guard is on site to ensure that none of the designers attempt to remove their furniture that they will never be paid for. It's absurd.
Young designers beware: seek legal assistance before supplying stores with your goods!