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UK’s Silk Industries’ Vanners Acquired Out of Bankruptcy

U.K. textiles firm Silk Industries Ltd. has been acquired by Robert Gawn, the owner of luxury leather goods firm Swaine Adeney Brigg, according to overseas reports.

Silk Industries does business under the trade banner Vanners. The company was founded in 1740 and is based in Sudbury, a hub known for its silk mills. The firm on Nov. 12 entered administration and later appointed KPMG Restructuring as its administrators. Following the appointment, 32 of the firm’s 64 employees were laid off, with the remaining staff staying on to fill existing orders.

Apparel Resources reported on Wednesday that Gawn had purchased the company. The report said that the company’s businesses include other textile products such as linen goods and upholstery filling.

Many British towns have a history in textile production. Lancashire is known as a cotton town, while Yorkshire has its wool weavers. There are six major towns that are part of England’s “Silk Route.” Sudbury is one of them, and it is the home of many long-established factories. Suffolk News, which covers towns in the county such as Sudbury, said that Vanners was based at Gregory Mills in Weavers Lane. Textile production in general has been hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic as many work with high-end fashion designers to supply them with their silks and other woven fabrics.

Consumers across the globe are spending less time in the office as they transition to working from home, for those who can, and apparel needs have trended toward more casual styles. Hampering any kind of economic recovery, many countries are now in the midst of a second or third lockdown as they battle rising Covid cases. Parts of the U.K. entered an emergency lockdown the Sunday before Christmas to combat a new strain of the virus, and nonessential retailers were closed the day after, best known as Boxing Day when retailers often have one of their biggest sales day of the year.