Victoria Beckham REVERSES her decision to furlough 30 fashion label staff during Covid-19 lockdown saying ‘the welfare of my team means everything to me’
- Victoria Beckham Ltd had planned to place 30 staff members on furlough
- The company was seeking up to £150,000 in taxpayer funds for two months
- The former Spice Girl, whose family is worth £335m, was criticised for the plan
- The company confirmed today they were no longer seeking taxpayer assistance
- Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19
Victoria Beckham has abandoned plans to seek a government bailout to furlough 30 members of staff at her fashion brand following a major backlash.
The former Spice Girl, whose family is worth £335million, had planned to use the Government’s Covid-19 scheme to pay 80 per cent of the wages of some of her staff.
The fashion brand, which employs 120 people, sent letters to 30 members of staff warning them that they were going to be furloughed under the Government’s scheme for two months.
Victoria Beckham, who posted this Instagram picture of her setting up her ‘working from home’ set-up, has reversed a decision to seek a taxpayer bailout for her fashion firm by furloughing 30 staff
She told The Guardian: ‘We will not now be drawing on the government furlough scheme. At the beginning of the lockdown the shareholders agreed with senior management to furlough a small proportion of staff. At that point we didn’t know how long the lockdown might last or its likely impact on the business.
‘The welfare of my team and our business means everything to me.’
It is understood the firm’s application would have cost taxpayers £150,000.
The firm denied the U-turn was a result of the public backlash and instead insisted the board ‘now believe that with the support of our shareholders, we can navigate through this crisis without drawing from the furlough scheme’.
The former Spice Girl (pictured in London, February 2020), had planned to use the Government’s Covid-19 scheme to pay 80 per cent of the wages of some of her staff
In a statement, the company said: ‘Victoria Beckham Ltd has been working hard to protect its people and, while adjusting to the impact of COVID-19 and the government lockdown, our decision to furlough a small number of our staff seemed the most appropriate option in keeping with many other businesses.
‘The situation is dynamic, and, with the support of our shareholders, we now believe we can navigate through this crisis without drawing from the government furlough scheme.
‘Our application was made in the best interests of trying to protect our staff, and that is still our absolute focus. We are doing everything we can to ensure we can achieve that without using government assistance.’
Other celebrities including Jamie Oliver and Dragons Den star Peter Jones have also sought taxpayer assistance for their staff.
Jamie Oliver, pictured, has sought taxpayer assistance to pay 80 per cent of the wages of 20 employees
Oliver has furloughed 20 people, including chefs at his Jamie Oliver Cookery School.
And Dragon’s Den star Peter Jones, worth £490million, reportedly furloughed 400 Jessops workers.
Sir Richard Branson and Sir Philip Green have also faced the wrath of the public for relying on government funds to pay their staff.
However, singer Ed Sheeran is one celebrity who ruled out seeking a taxpayer bailout for the ten staff he employs at his Notting Hill pub Bertie Blossoms.
The singer, who is worth £170 million, will pay the wages of his staff while the bar is forced to close due to the government’s Covid-19 lockdown.