Sucked in, spat out: Vacuum experts Godfreys sadly going to the wall

Godfreys will be wound down after no satisfactory bids were submitted to acquire the 93-year-old business from voluntary administration.

Mar 21, 2024, updated Mar 21, 2024
Godfreys has gone into liquidation.

Godfreys has gone into liquidation.

A phased closure of all stores will be initiated between now and May 31, the company’s administrators announced on Wednesday.

PwC Australia partner Craig Crosbie said that while 55 expressions of interest and six indicative offers were received during a rigorous search to find a buyer, these were either since withdrawn or not sufficient to secure the business’s longer-term future.

“This is not the outcome Godfreys had hoped for,” Mr Crosbie said.

“In the absence of any further bidders coming forward as intermittent trading continues, the process of closing all remaining stores will progress over the next eight weeks.”

Twenty-five head office staff were made redundant on Wednesday and the remaining staff will be progressively let go as stores close.

Godfreys had 141 stores and more than 600 staff across Australia and New Zealand when it entered voluntary administration at the end of January, which resulted in 54 store closures and 193 layoffs.

The company’s 28 franchises have been told that Godfreys can no longer support them from Wednesday.

They can trade until March 31 to realise the value of existing stock or return it.

“We recognise this is a difficult time for staff, franchisees, and other stakeholders, and we will continue to work closely with all parties to ensure they are informed and supported over the coming weeks,” Mr Crosbie said.

Godfreys was founded in Melbourne by Godfrey Cohen during the Great Depression, at a time when vacuum cleaners were sold door-to-door and could not be purchased in Australian stores.

It listed on the ASX in late 2014 but was taken private just four years later after struggling from competition from retailers such as Harvey Norman, JB Hi-Fi, Amazon and

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