An interesting week in the silver jewellery world this week. On Saturday 2nd April, I heard that Hi Ho Silver in Dorchester was shut. The local boutique (Every Cloud) was inundated with people walking to the other end of the street to view her collections. Good news for her, but what had happened to Hi Ho Silver? On Monday, I noticed the website had a message posted stating that they would 'be back soon' and by Tuesday a blog was posted by them to state that due to difficult conditions on the high street, Hi Ho Silver had been put into Administration. The website had been purchased by the former owners and that they would be operating as mobile events.
What causes companies to go into Administration? Apart from the fact that the company owes more money than it can afford to pay - so the Administrator's job is to redeem assets and pay off the people that are owed - priority order being for taxes first! Any Limited company ensures that the individuals in charge don't have their personal assets seized which means that they can use their personal assets if they wish to start again if that's what they wish to do.
Bank's can call in debts, putting companies into Administration if they believe that a situation of debt will only get worse or refuse to lend further thus making it impossible to continue trading. Quite often over expansion can create such problems, coupled with sales not matching the expansion. With numerous shops on the high streets of South West England and the rent and rates payable, staff wages to pay and reduced sales one can assume to be the key factor leading to the demise of Hi Ho Silver on the high street.
However, the question also comes into play (which is what interests me the most), the phrase 'Handmade Silver Jewellery' I noted quite often that Hi Ho Silver had advertised with Google 'Handmade Silver Jewellery' and yet when I looked, I found that I was hard pushed to find anything which wasn't machine manufactured. So what is the definition of handmade silver jewellery? A topic for another blog, I think!
It's sad to see another institution disappear from the high street - although when there is a resurgence of buying quality handmade items within the United Kingdom is it not perhaps surprising when a company has reduced sales if their prices are the same as 'handmade in the UK' but the majority are machine made imports?