The liquidator of collapsed fashion group BHS has launched a legal action against Sir Philip Green’s fashion empire.
The action has been filed in the High Court by SHB Realisations, formerly BHS, and now being run by liquidator FRP Advisory.
The issue at stake remains a mystery as the legal document, submitted at the end of July, gives no details other than to name SHB as the claimant and Arcadia Group Limited – the parent company of Green’s fashion empire – as the defendant.
The liquidator of BHS has launched a legal action against Sir Philip Green’s fashion empire
City lawyers Jones Day filed the docket at the High Court on behalf of SHB Realisations, while Linklaters, another of the City’s top law firms, is Arcadia’s defence lawyer.
Arcadia, Sir Philip Green and FRP Advisory all refused to comment.
The move marks the first public sign that the BHS saga is far from over and a new chapter in the long-running story of BHS’s dramatic collapse.
Green sold BHS to former bankrupt Dominic Chappell in 2015 for £1. A year later the company collapsed with the eventual loss of 11,000 jobs.
The crash triggered a protracted public war of words over the company’s multi- million pound pension deficit, which cast a shadow over the lives of thousands of former BHS workers left facing cuts to their retirement incomes.
Green – who had owned and run BHS for 15 years – and his family earned hundreds of millions of pounds in dividends while the group was profitable.
After the collapse of BHS Green came under widespread attack over the pension deficit
After the collapse Green came under widespread public attack and was savaged by MPs over the pension deficit.
He pledged to ‘sort it’ and last February he agreed to pay £363 million into the BHS pension fund.
Administrator Duff & Phelps took control of BHS in April last year, but then FRP Advisory was appointed as a joint administrator in July at the insistence of the Pension Protection Fund.
FRP was finally appointed liquidator of BHS last December, meaning all assets are being sold off to pay out to creditors.
The Pension Protection Fund remains the largest single creditor of the former BHS group.
Last December FRP said it had collected a vast quantity of data concerning BHS’s finances which it said would allow it to conduct ‘a full and extensive investigation into the company’s financial history and subsequent insolvency’.
It also said it was probing ‘a number of historic matters of concern and key transactions’.