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Ted Baker

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Ted Baker PLC
Company typePrivate
ISINGB0001048619 Edit this on Wikidata
FoundedGlasgow, Scotland (1988)
FounderRay Kelvin
RevenueIncrease £617.4 million (2019)[1]
Decrease £54.5 million (2019)[1]
Decrease £40.7 million (2019)[1]

Ted Baker is a British high-street clothing retail founded in 1988 in Glasgow, Scotland. The brand is styled as 'Ted Baker, London'.[2] The company offers a wide range of clothing, male and female, accessories, aftershaves and perfumes.[3][2][4]

At its peak the brand had over 500 shops and concessions around the world, and was regarded as a desirable, high status fashion brand.[5][3] The company is now owned by Authentic Brands Group, the American owners of Reebok, after its £211 million acquisition in October 2022.[5] In March 2024, Ted Baker called in the administrators for its European operations, due to years of problems, poor sales, and mounting debts.[6][7] As of April 2024, Ted Baker's global operation have been reported as close to collapse, with mass shop closures, and bankruptcy.[8][9][10]



Founder Ray Kelvin, named the company after a self-styled alter ego, an "intrepid aviator, an all-round sportsman and the consort of princesses and Hollywood beauties".[11] Kelvin opened his first Ted Baker store in March 1988 in Glasgow, and soon opened further stores in Manchester and Nottingham. In 1990 Ted Baker opened a store in Covent Garden, London, with further stores in London's Soho, Nottingham and Leeds. A new range, Ted Baker Woman, was launched in 1995. The next few years were a time of rapid expansion, with Ted Baker stores, and wholesale operations, opening all over the world, and Ted Baker product lines expanding. In 1998, the company launched their first website.[4] The company moved into their London headquarters, The Ugly Brown Building, in 2000.[4]

Sales of Ted Baker would remain strong throughout the early 2000s. In October 2009, the first problems for the brand were reported, with The Independent financial section reporting problems in Ted Baker's wholesale sales. At this time, Ted Baker shares traded for 460.75p.[12] Over the next few years, Ted Baker would continue opening stores around the world, including in August 2012, a Ted Baker store on Fifth Avenue in New York.[13] In 2014, Ted Baker launched luggage, home fragrance and audio, as well as collections.[4] As of 2018, Ted Baker had 500 stores and concessions worldwide: 192 in the UK, 98 in Europe, 111 in the US and Canada, 80 in the Middle East, Africa and Asia and 9 in Australia.[5][14] The company purchased its London headquarters for £58.25 million in 2017.[15] Despite certain problems, the 2010s would see sustained growth for the company. In March 2018, Ted Baker shares reached their all-time high price of 3214p a share.[16]

Ted Baker store, Brompton Road, London in 2016

2018 saw Ted Baker mark 30 years as a company, by releasing a range of celebratory 30 year anniversary items, and the company's first official advertising campaign.[4] However, 2018 would prove to be a very difficult year for the brand. In December 2018, allegations against founder and CEO Ray Kelvin emerged, with petition signed by 300 current and past employees accusing Kelvin of 'forced hugging'.[16] After initially taking a leave of absence in response to allegations, on 4 March 2019 it was announced that Kelvin had resigned, and would be leaving the company immediately, with Lindsay Page taking over as CEO.[17][18][19] At this time the retailer also issued a profit warning, after writing off £5m of unsold clothes. At this time, Ted Baker shares were trading at 1973.5p.[16] In December 2019, poor trading figures led to Page and executive chairman David Bernstein stepping down from their roles, and Rachel Osborne being appointed acting CEO.[20][21]

In 2019, The Observer criticised Ted Baker for "high prices and out-of-step styling", noting that the brand had been overtaken by multiple competitors. The Observer also cited excessive diversification as one of the reasons for the brand's decline.[3] In 2019, the company issued four profit warnings, including blaming unseasonably warm weather during what would traditionally be the beginning of the Autumn/Winter selling season.[22] Ted Baker's troubles continued in 2020, as in January 2020 the firm revealed that an accounting error was twice as big as had been previously thought, leaving a £58m hole in its balance sheet.[23] In April 2020, Ted Baker furloughed nearly 2,000 employees, around 75% of their workforce, including head office staff, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The company also suspended non-essential capital expenditure and halted any discretionary operating expenses. In March 2020, the company sold their London headquarters, The Ugly Brown Building, for £78.8m.[6] At this time, Ted Baker's problems started attracting wide attention in the media, with the company referred to in the media as 'struggling' and 'troubled'.[6][3]

Ted Baker store in Brisbane, Australia

In October 2022, after years of troubles, and falling sales, Ted Baker was acquired by Authentic Brands Group (ABG) for £211 million.[5] Authentic Brands, owners of Reebok and the David Beckham brands, pledged to revive the fortunes of the Ted Baker brand.[24] Under the terms of the ABG takeover, Ted Baker plc's shareholders were paid £1.10 per share, as the deal marked the end of the company's listing on the London Stock Exchange.[25][5] Despite the takeover, the decline of Ted Baker continued without any sign of reversal. In June 2023, Osborne stepped down as the company's chief executive.[26][27] By March 2024, the number of UK stores had fallen from 192 in 2018, to 86.[7] Ted Baker's European stores have also fallen sharply, from 98 to 46, as Ted Baker stores across the world have closed in recent years.[28]

In February 2024, ABG severed ties with AARC, the company which had been running its Ted Baker stores and e-commerce business in Europe. AARC had reportedly "failed to inject promised funding into the business and meet its financial obligations to Authentic".[29] The company also announced in February that it could not pay rent for its British shops.[30] In March it was announced that No Ordinary Designer Label (NODL), the holding company for Ted Baker's retail and online operations in the UK and Europe, had filed intention to appoint administrators to the European operations of the ailing business. The move puts up to 1000 jobs at risk. ABG's chief strategy and transition officer John McNamara blamed the problems to the period of AARC control.[31]

Analysing the brand's fall in 2024, financial expert Gary Hemming, said: "Ted Baker has faced a torrid few years after their founder left the business in 2019 following allegations of inappropriate behaviour. This had led to a real domino effect for the brand as reputational damage coupled with instability in the company hierarchy saw Ted Baker head into the pandemic in a sorry state. While most retail brands reacted quickly and adapted to the new market, there was a feeling that Ted Baker, already reeling, failed to do so. From there, a death spiral has ensued as the brand has slipped to irrelevance, being replaced by newer, fresher brands that have managed to capture the interest of shoppers."[7][31] As of March 2024, Ted Baker stores are still open, and online orders are still being taken, however the website notes that 'Orders are Currently Delayed'.[2] Ted Baker has not updated their company timeline since 2018.[4]

In April 2024, Ted Baker's administrators, Teneo, announced the closure of 15 Ted Baker shops across the UK, with 245 redundancies, leaving Ted Baker with 31 stores and 564 staff in UK and Ireland, as Teneo attempt to find a buyer to rescue the remains of the business.[8] On 24 April 2024, Ted Baker Canada filed for creditor protection in Canada. Ted Baker U.S. declared Chapter 15 bankruptcy that same day, blaming the operation suppliers of Authentic Brands Group for failing to pay. As a result, it was announced that all U.S. and Canada Ted Baker stores, as well as all Brooks Brothers and Lucky Brand stores in Canada, would close.[10] On April 29, it was reported that Ted Baker's European operation was facing collapse.[9] In May 2024 it was reported that Ted Baker’s largest creditor, Secure Trust Bank, had fallen out with the chain’s administrators, Teneo, over claims of a conflict of interest.[32]

See also



  1. ^ a b c "Annual Report & Accounts 2018/19" (PDF). Ted Baker. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  2. ^ a b c "Ted Baker". Retrieved 27 March 2024.
  3. ^ a b c d "Why Ted Baker is poorly suited to today's high street". The Guardian. 13 December 2019. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Our Timeline". Ted Baker. Retrieved 4 July 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Ted Baker agrees takeover by US Reebok owner". The Guardian. 16 August 2022. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  6. ^ a b c "Ted Baker furloughs 75% of workforce". 3 April 2020. Retrieved 24 April 2020.
  7. ^ a b c O'Boyle, Daniel (20 March 2024). "Ted Baker calls in administrators in latest UK fashion collapse". Evening Standard. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  8. ^ a b "245 jobs to go as insolvent Ted Baker to close 15 shops — including four in London". 8 April 2024. Retrieved 8 April 2024.
  9. ^ a b "Ted Baker's European arm faces collapse, 149 jobs at risk". retailsector.co.uk. 29 April 2024. Retrieved 25 April 2024.
  10. ^ a b "Ted Baker's North American Arm Follows U.K. Business Into Bankruptcy". Wall Street Journal. 25 April 2024. Retrieved 25 April 2024.
  11. ^ "Former boss ready to dress Ted Baker for private party". The Times. 22 July 2019. Retrieved 4 July 2021.
  12. ^ "Investment Column: Ted Baker hasn't gone out of fashion yet". The Independent. 9 October 2009. Retrieved 27 March 2024.
  13. ^ "Jubilee celebration gives Ted Baker a lift". 12 June 2012. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  14. ^ "Preliminary Results 2018" (PDF). 27 January 2018. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  15. ^ "Is there more growth from Ted Baker after 2,300% return in 20 years?". walbrookresearch.com. 6 June 2017. Retrieved 6 June 2017.
  16. ^ a b c "Ted Baker staff launch petition over 'forced hugging'". The Guardian. 4 March 2019. Retrieved 27 March 2024.
  17. ^ "Ted Baker staff launch petition over 'forced hugging'". BBC News. 2 December 2018. Retrieved 2 December 2018.
  18. ^ "Ted Baker boss takes leave of absence". BBC News. 7 December 2018. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  19. ^ "Ted Baker founder Ray Kelvin resigns amid 'forced hugging' row". BBC News. 4 March 2019. Retrieved 30 December 2019.
  20. ^ "Nightmare before Christmas for Ted Baker as top bosses quit after profits take a nosedive". Evening Standard. 10 December 2019. Retrieved 30 December 2019.
  21. ^ Butler, Sarah; Kollewe, Julia (10 December 2019). "Ted Baker bosses quit as it warns over profits plunge". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 December 2019.
  22. ^ "How Ted Baker fell apart, leaving hundreds facing redundancy". 19 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  23. ^ "Ted Baker balance sheet error worse than feared as woes deepen". The Guardian. 22 January 2020. Retrieved 22 April 2024.
  24. ^ "Authentic Brands completes £211m acquisition of Ted Baker". 21 October 2022. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  25. ^ "Ted Baker to be taken over by Authentic Brands in £211m deal". sharecast.com. 16 August 2022. Retrieved 27 March 2024.
  26. ^ "Ted Baker CEO Rachel Osborne to step down". 26 April 2023. Retrieved 23 August 2023.
  27. ^ "Ocado names ex-Ted Baker CEO as non-executive director". 27 June 2023. Retrieved 29 April 2024.
  28. ^ "Authentic severs ties with AARC and weighs Ted Baker CVA". retaildetail.eu. 6 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  29. ^ "Authentic severs ties with AARC and weighs Ted Baker CVA". Just Style. 6 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  30. ^ "Authentic severs ties with AARC and weighs Ted Baker CVA". retaildetail.eu. 20 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  31. ^ a b "Nearly 1,000 jobs at risk as Ted Baker prepares to appoint administrators". The Guardian. 19 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  32. ^ "Ted Baker's largest lender falls out with administrators over chain's collapse". www.retailgazette.co.uk. 24 May 2024. Retrieved 29 May 2024.