Issues related to buyers holding back payments continue to trouble the garment makers in Bangladesh with the latest case being that of German fashion retailer Colloseum, which is allegedly holding back payments of at least nine apparel exporters.
According to media reports, Colloseum bought apparel items (T-shirts, polo shirts and sweaters) worth US $ 15 lakh from these nine apparel manufacturing companies (between December last year and February this year) all of which are small and medium-sized units; namely Disney Sweater, Kappa Fashion Wear, Seo Wan Bangladesh, Base Fashion Wear, Gramtech Knit Dyeing & Garment Industries Ltd., Dynasty Sweater (BD), Anzir Apparels, Bakhrabad Knitting Industries and IRIS Fashions; through its Hong Kong based vendor, Asia Today Ltd.
However, despite receiving the goods well before the coronavirus crisis unfolded, the company is allegedly holding back the payments on the pretext of being hit by the pandemic despite being served with legal notices even as it allegedly continues to source apparels from Bangladesh with a different name.
Further, despite being offered deferred payment option, the retailer reportedly failed to give any timeframe on if and when it would be able to make the payment, some of its suppliers claimed.
Meanwhile, it has emerged that Colloseum, the fast-fashion retailer for young and price-conscious women, has been declared insolvent and sold to Schulz Fashion GmbH, as per Acxit Recovery Management website, with the new owner reportedly supposed to take over 104 of the 136 stores that are operational as of 1 July.
Speaking to the media, Vice-President of the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) maintained that the trade body has received complaints from some of its members against Colloseum and the association is planning to send the German retailer a show cause notice soon, the BKMEA VP underlined.
Both Asia Today and Colloseum are yet to make any comment on the issue despite being contacted through email, the report claimed.