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Jeanswest collapses, 988 staff and 146 stores at risk

ICONIC Australian retail chain Jeanswest has been put into administration, with hundreds of jobs and dozens of stores at risk.

KPMG's Peter Gothard and James Stewart were appointed administrators to the clothing company, Jeanswest Corporation Pty Ltd today.

Jeanswest, which opened its first store in Perth in 1972, employs 988 people in 146 stores across Australia.

Jeanswest launched in Queensland in 1985 and now boasts 28 stores across the state.

The company is best known for its denim, wardrobe staples and maternity wear.

Jeanswest's operations outside of Australia are not impacted by the administration.

Jeanswest sold high-quality denim wear.
Jeanswest sold high-quality denim wear.

KPMG partner Peter Gothard said the company would continue to operate while the

administrators "conduct an urgent analysis of the business".

"The administrators will be looking at all options for the restructure or sale of this established Australian retail business and are seeking urgent expressions of interest from parties interested in acquiring or investing in the business," he said.

James Stewart, KPMG's retail restructuring practice leader, said it had been "challenged by

current tough market conditions and pressure from online competition".

"The administration provides an opportunity for Jeanswest to restructure so as to better respond to the challenging Australian retail market," he said.

Administrators are now searching for interested parties to acquire or recapitalise the business.

The first meeting of creditors will be held in Melbourne on January 28.