Ted Baker probes £25m stock overstatement

A Ted Baker shopImage copyright Ted Baker

Fashion retailer Ted Baker has said it may have overstated the value of its stock by between £20m and £25m.

Law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is to carry out a review, and independent accountants will also be appointed to investigate.

Ted Baker said it did not expect any cash impact, but one analyst said the timing was “less than ideal”.

Earlier this year, the company’s former boss Ray Kelvin stepped down over misconduct allegations.

The company said in a statement: “Ted Baker is committed to ensuring the independent review is completed in an efficient and transparent manner and will update the market as appropriate. Whilst the review is ongoing, the company will not comment further.”

The problems are the latest setback for the firm. Mr Kelvin left in March following harassment allegations.

Mr Kelvin, who had been chief executive since the company’s launch in 1988, resigned over claims he presided over a culture of “forced hugging”. He has denied all allegations of misconduct.

The company has also seen its sales, profits and share price tumble. In October, the retailer reported a £23m loss for the six months to 10 August, down from a £24.5m profit last year. The company is due to publish its latest trading next week.

Analysts at Liberum said: “Today’s latest news from Ted Baker, regarding the overstatement of last year’s inventory value, is less than ideal.”